For consumers, March comes in like a lion with two solid weeks of savings opportunities before we “lamb” it down for two consecutive four day weekends of March Madness. So if you’re a baller, shop early, or in early April if you win the pool. Seriously, minus a true big holiday sales event apart from sporadic St. Patrick’s Day deals, early March brings a variety of category deals via the end of winter clearance as it ushers in spring with continuous weekend sales designed to help you treat cabin fever with some new stuff.
FatWallet helps you make more out of second half of the month with their annual Spring Fashion Deals followed by a March Mania Cash Back Sale, featuring more than 100 retailers increasing cash back from March 17-30. Add increased cash back to these deal categories to run the savings score up on your March purchases and stretch those tax refunds for “What to Buy in March”:
Smartphone Deals: Like CES and the other winter tech convention, the Mobile World Congress makes its call the first weekend in March, bring with it news of all the new mobile tech due out at some point this year, with some sooner than others. Expect announcements of new Samsung Galaxy S6 smartphones, a new HTC One M9, and a host of other smartphones from Motorola’s Moto line to Sony’s Experia and several new budget smartphones to compete in the cheap LTE segment. What does this mean for consumers following the event? Expect a fire sale of last year’s models as cell phone brands and carriers scramble to move older inventory via a captive audience during the heavily watched March Madness. Add that a new Apple Watch starts taking orders April 1st, putting more pressure on the Android market to sell units at discount.
Electronics Deals: Prices continue to drop on electronics as new 2015 models start to creep into retail inventory. This is especially enhanced this year with TV deals, as the first big crop of 4K TV deals get pushed to clearance. The price reductions have been significant following Super Bowl sales and continue to drop for both off-brand 4K TVs and bigger name brands. Recent price slides include a 50# Changhung 4K TV for under $600, a 51” Samsung Plasma under $350, and Panasonic 4K TVs 40% off. Shoppers can expect to save as much as 50% leading up to March Madness, as well as scoring some of the best deals of the year on TV accessories and cables from tech stores like Newegg, Parts Express and Monoprice, all featuring massive clearance sales for those willing to dig a little bit. These stores can save you more than half of what you’d spend for big brand name cables and accessories…the Fatwallet tech nerds know their deals when it comes to this stuff!
Winter Clothing Clearance melts into Spring Fashion Deals: The picked through top brand outerwear can be found at outlet prices 50-80% off for quality thermals, pullovers, coats, boots and high performance gloves from REI, Moosejaw, Cabela’s and others. Big box will continue their clearance sales as well (of note last year: Kohl’s offered Extra 30% off & Free Shipping for Kohl’s Card Holders + $10 Kohl’s Cash for Every $50 Spent), though the focus early March will shift to Spring Fashion deals. These early sales may not bring clearance pricing, but retailers will offer discounts to get a jump on the seasonal apparel starting around 20% savings. Plus, early spring fashion shoppers have the luxury finding the styles, colors and sizes they want and a full use of the season to wear them. Spring shoe deals feature a variety of discounts for running shoe deals from stores like FinishLine, New Balance Outlet and Nike, that featured deep clearance discounts of 50% or more and free shipping offers with qualified purchases last year on last year’s shoe styles.
Outdoor Sports and Equipment: Ski/snowboard/hockey/sakting equipment and accessories clearance heats up as the snow melts. Lat season’s Bicycles and accessories get discounted to make way for newer models for spring and summer activities making for a good time to upgrade and save a bundle, if you haven’t in a few years. Sports Authority, Dick’s Sporting Goods and other stores will feature sales pre-draft for NFL gear, pre-season for MLB opening day celebrations and, collegiate sportswear discounts on hoodies, hats and jerseys as bracketology takes center court.
Travel Deals: Last minute Spring Break packages and March Madness hotel deals trend early this month. Late March will bring the beginning of early summer vacation deals, hotel discounts and car rental specials. Proactive summer vacation bookers will take advantage of late March travel deals that bring better options for location, seat selection and lucrative early-bird specials/inclusions.Luggage deals are packed this month as well, stackable with the clearance add-on savings, and double cash back from FatWallet’s March Mania Cash Back sale.
Tax Software Deals will be trending again in late March as those alarms start to go off for procrastinators, the closer we get to April 15. The majority of 2015 software can be found for 50% off, and often for free (with filing charges). For insider tax tips, visit FatWallet Finance forum where experienced DIY filers share tactics on how to get the most out of deductions, tax software and refunds. Office Supplies go onside at the end of the month and into April, creating one of, if not the best time of year to stock up on school supply basics and home office supplies and equipment.