Scope Out These Cyber Monday Deals

By: CBS
By: CBS

Now that Black Friday is but a distant memory, holiday bargain hunters are gearing up for Cyber Monday, one of the biggest online shopping days of the year, which is now less than one day away.

Cyber Monday starts tomorrow at midnight, when hundreds of "e-tailers" reveal deals and steals on their home pages.

But how can you take advantage of the bargains?

Luckily, Regina Lewis, AOL consumer adviser, shared some tips on "The Early Show on Saturday Morning" on how to navigate to the best online deals, while making sure you don't fall victim to an online scam in the process.

Lewis explained Cyber Monday - like Black Friday - is a term coined by the Nation Retail Federation. She explained it's a marketing tool, but is one that offers many legitimate deals for consumers.

According to Lewis, 85 percent of online retailers will offer some kind of Cyber Monday deal, and one out of every six Americans will shop online on Monday.

"There's a lot of momentum going in," she said.

Lewis recommended buyers keep offline rules of thumb in mind when buying online.

"If you are buying big-ticket items - a television, laptop, an e-reader, fine jewelry - prioritize your time by price. Big-ticket items tend to sell out and go first. Otherwise, for other items, I would certainly wake up early. Here's the deadline in my head: 10:00 a.m. Eastern on Monday, before the lunch hour on the east coast when the whole world is going to be shopping and selection is going to go down. You will run into things, like 'Yes. we have that item only in one couple of colors and sizes.'

"If you want variety, wake up early."

"Early Show" co-anchor Dr. Debbye Turner Bell remarked, "At least you can do it in your pajamas!"

But what sites will have the best deals?

Lewis said, "Wal-Mart set an unbelievable precedence on Black Friday with laptops and televisions. They're known for 'how low can you go.' The same is true on their website. What people don't understand is they have tens of thousands of items more, additional things than the store. It's a whole different division of Wal-Mart and I think they will have exceptional prices."

Lewis told Bell it's a good idea for shoppers to join e-newsletters to find out about the latest deals and coupon codes.

She said, "Other sites, like Amazon.com has something called Lightning Deals, which roll out on the half hour. You've got to be quick. I want to remind everybody it's not to have the item in your cart. You actually have to complete the check-out process."

Lewis continued, "It is a good time to register with sites, type in your address, get in your billing process and be fast and up to the tee, if you will, in the check-out process."

Lewis recommended these sites to help you sort through the deals on Cyber Monday and throughout your holiday shopping:

• WalletPop.com
• GottaDeal.com
• CyberMonday.com

But in the search for a good deal on Cyber Monday, Lewis warned of online scammers.

She offered these three scam signs:

Bogus Bargains: "It's the online equivalent of throwing up a sign in the window that says going out of business when you're really not. Just because you see the term cyber Monday doesn't mean it is a legitimate sale. It is only a sale if the price is right. You will see cyber Monday plastered all over the web."

Lookalike Sites: "Actually if you go to a site, the Gap is the Gap is the Gap, should be pretty safe. The culprit is fake e-mail confirmations, and they go like this, 'before we ship your recently purchased item we need to confirm a couple of things.' (You say,) 'I have been shopping and I do want it to make it on time, and you to e-mail back pertinent information, your credit card, your social security number. That never happens by e-mail. Watch for those. If they're not addressed to you or they're not from a place you shopped, they're false confirmation emails."

Pitfall of Free Shipping "Free shipping people say, 'You need the code before we give the code, again, you have to hand over information.' You should never have to hand over your credit card information or social security to get a secret code. That's not the way it works. And e-mail tends to be the culprit. Stay in the driver's seat going to websites we've given out, and you'll be fine."


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