May Is One of the Best Times Of The Year For Snagging Great Deals

Consumer goods, like fresh produce, have seasons. Purchasing certain items during specific months, weeks or weekends, will offer you better selections and lower prices.

May is a bargain lover’s paradise.

It is nestled in a consumer sweet spot of post Mother’s Day deals, Memorial Day sales, pre-back-to-school and end-of-season clearances and the launch of new products.

It is the perfect storm for snagging great buys.

Post Mother’s Day Deals:

The closer we get to Mother’s Day, the more pricey traditional gifts become. Jewelry, floral arrangements, theater or show tickets, and spa visits tend to increase in price at the beginning of the month, which means procrastinators will pay a premium for their Mother’s Day gifts.

The days just after the holiday is when traditional gift items are at their lowest—especially jewelry.

In fact, shoppers can expect to save up to 70 percent on fine jewelry as long as they wait until after Mother’s Day. Peak sales occur in the week right after we celebrate mom—specifically those first few days.

Mid-Month Deals:

Post-Mother’s Day and Pre-Memorial Day is a great time to grab some specific spring deals. During this time, the following items are at their annual low:

Health and beauty items—This includes everything from cosmetics, sunscreen to perfume and beauty creams. The best place to find coupons for these items are online and newspaper inserts. Historically, Ulta, Target, Bath & Body Works and Sallys offer the most substantial price cuts during this time.
Camping and Outdoor Gear— May marks the unofficial beginning of summer and camping season. These items go on sale at the beginning of the month and last until just after Memorial Day. This includes everything from camping gear to all things barbecue—grills, charcoal, paper plates and the list goes on… Sears, Walmart, REI and Dick’s sporting goods offer discounts of up to 40 percent.
Patio Furniture—Retailers are aware that most consumers like to replace their patio furniture at the beginning or end of summer. Consumers can find great deals on outdoor furnishings at both times of the year. Sears, Target and Walmart will offer discounts as high as 35 percent now and even deeper discounts near the end of summer.
Caribbean Vacations—May marks the middle of the “Caribbean’s shoulder season” which is a period of time between the lowest part of tourist travel and peak season. Prices are currently at their lowest. This includes discounted fares on cruises, transportation, accommodations and excursions.
Spring and winter apparel—Sales on these items run all month long. Stores are trying to rid themselves of as much winter merchandise as possible and entice shoppers to start shopping for spring.

Memorial Day Deals:

Mattresses—Mattresses are one of the most discounted items during the month of May. You can find prices slashed as much as 70 percent. In store deals can be sweetened by pairing them with coupons or with deal websites such as Groupon or Living Social.
Appliances—Most appliances, and specifically refrigerators experience a major drop in price during Memorial Day Weekend. This is due in part to the traditional holiday sales but also because manufacturers release new refrigerator models in May. If you are willing to shop last year’s inventory, you can find prices dropped by 80 percent.
Televisions— This is a tricky category. May is usually mediocre at best if you are in the market for a TV, especially a big screen or top of the line model with all of the bells and whistles. However, 42” and 55” TV’s are priced extremely low compared to other times of the year. These two sizes are seeing the most deals at the best prices.

May is one of the best times of the year for consumers to get the most for their money. Understanding retail trends and consumer spending habits will make you a more savvy shopper and allow you to maximize your dollar.

Featured image by Roderick Eime on Flickr and available for use under Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Consumer Expert Denise Hill

Denise is currently a writer and editor for a federal agency in Washington, DC. She is an open-minded free spirit always ready for new adventures. She enjoys traveling and relishes being exposed to alternate points of view. Faith, family and finances are the core of her value system. She follows her own path and marches to her own beat. She is a dream chaser and with her husband and best friend by her side, she plans to take over the world.