What to Buy in MAY: Shopping Trends 2014

May comes to consumers with a plethora of opportunities to save money on big ticket items. From Mother’s Day sales to Memorial Day sales to spring clean up discounts, there is a variety of products and services ripe for purchase if you know when and where to shop. For the last 4 years, May spending has seen growth, aided by huge increases (14.6 billion in 2010 to 21.7 billion in 2013) from Mother’s Day gift purchases, especially for tech products like tablets and smartphones.

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Tech related products prices continue to drop in 2014, lower than what we experienced last Black Friday, so we expect this May spending growth trend to continue this year. Note: FatWallet’s 2014 Electronics Buyer Survey reports that 53% of females said they will purchase new smartphones and 26% new tablets.

Early May is “the” prime-time to book summer family vacations, snag savings from local deals on events and activities and score excellent deals on sports and outdoors equipment during aggressive deep discounting. In all, May equates to a very solid month of savings on things we need for summer fun, especially by adding increased cash back from dozens of top stores all month long.

Mother’s Day Sales- not just for moms:

”mothersMother’s Day sales bring out big discounts and increased cash back savings from dozens of top stores on purchases for traditional gifts, items moms want for the home and exclusive deals on wireless and mobile devices for moms that want the latest tech.

  • Flowers & Gifts: flowers, candy, books, crafts & supplies, jewelry
  • Home & Garden: cookware/kitchenware, pots, plants, tools, feeders, outdoor decor
  • Gift Cards: restaurants, retail, craft/fabric stores, electronics
  • Local Deals: Groupon offering FatWallet members exclusive discounts on spas, events, activities and getaways with double to quadruple cash back through May 11.
  • Tech: laptops, tablets, smartphones, cameras, streaming media, wireless devices

Tip: Not sure what to get mom…Gift cards let moms go shopping for “free”. FatWallet features dozens of stores offering Mother’s Day discounts on e-gift cards–many with additional cash back savings, including Starbucks cards, iTunes gift cards and American Express.

Sports and Outdoors Deals – will run amuck:

”golfAll outdoors-fanatics will at least take a peek at the cost to upgrade their sports equipment, camping/fishing/hiking gear and athletic shoes. Look beyond discounts for the biggest savings as mail-in-rebates and in-store pickup can save you hundreds of dollars when shopping online.

  • Sports: golf, cycling, baseball, athletic apparel/shoes
  • Outdoors: fishing, cycling, running, camping, swimming, hiking

Tip: Look for trade-in value, especially for golf clubs, bicycles and some fishing gear and utilize inexpensive extended warranties by using AMEX or Squaretrade on these types of products.

Summer Vacation Deals – book them fast:

”travelFinding the best summer vacation deals is timely (like now!). Plus, FatWallet features added savings of cash back on all the major travel sites like Priceline, Expedia, Travelocity, Booking.com and Orbitz.

  • Airfare: Book now to fly cheaper on popular airlines like Delta, American, Southwest, Jet Blue, Virgin Atlantic and compare prices.
  • Hotels: Get cash back along with the best vacation packages staying in hotels like Hilton, Marriot, Westin, Ramada and more.
  • Car Rental: Drive summer vacation savings by comparing prices and cash back rates from all the top car rental companies and look for free rental car upgrades, one-way discount codes and rental car packages.
  • Local Deals: Find 50% or more off local events, activities and getaways + cash back!

Tip: Booking early not only saves you money, but often gives you the best selection of plane seats, hotel room views and model of rental cars.

Memorial Day Sales – shop them early:

”MattressMuch like President’s day and Labor Day sales, the 3-day weekend sales events have more of a a captive audience, especially from both heads of household creating opportunity for families to make big ticket purchase decisions. The majority of retailers participate in Memorial Day sales by offering aggressive pricing, deep discounts and exclusive coupons for several days leading up to the holiday. This means there’s some really great deals and you can really save a bundle on these key products:

  • Home Furnishings: mattresses!!, furniture, patio sets
  • Appliances: refrigerators, washers, & dryers, stoves/ranges
  • Clothing: kick-off of Spring Fashion Clearance
  • Travel: “last minute specials” on summer vacation bookings

Tip: Last year (2013) like Black friday, memorial Day sales started a week early–look for that to happen agin this year and use that early time to compare prices before you buy.

Father’s Day Sales – best tool deals of the year:

”toolStarting the end of May into the first 2-3 weeks of June, it’s tool time for savings. Whther you’re looking for gifts or shopping for yourself, there will be ample deals with 30-70% discounts on power and hand tools, plus home improvement products, including paint and exterior and interior building materials

  • Sports and Outdoors: golf, camping, fishing, grilling, gym memberships
  • Tools: power tools, storage/boxes, automotive, home improvement, garden and yard
  • Electronics: laptops, tablets, smartphones, wireless gadgets

Tip: When purchases these items (which are usually big and heavy), try to stack cash back and coupons with free in-store pickup, or better yet, free delivery. Sometimes that can make a higher priced item/shopping cart a better deal.

You can find and tweeting about suds and other substance @brentsheltonnow.

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