Holiday Shopping - The EASY Way
An idea to take the stress and hassle out of holiday shopping. Also, a free online discount shopping club, featuring hundreds of popular stores and catalogs
Holiday Shopping - The EASY Way
Copyright 2000 By D. A. Bolick All Rights Reserved
You have permission to publish this article electronically or in print, free of charge, as long as the bylines and URL are included. You may change the "Holiday" in the title to "Christmas" or "Hanukkah" to suit your publication. A courtesy copy of your publication would be appreciated. 850 words, formatted to 65 characters per line. Auto responder address: email@example.com
Starting about the first week in December (my wife and I celebrate Christmas), it seems like everywhere I go people are asking something like "How's the Holiday shopping coming?", or "Have you started your Holiday shopping yet?". You should see the looks of disbelief I get when I answer a resounding "Yes! I'm all done." And, In most cases, the querying party admits that they have not even started, even if it is only a day or so before the blessed event. I feel for them!
You see, a few years ago my wife and I discovered a way to take the "panic" out of holiday shopping for gifts. And, when I give friends, business associates or sales clerks my "Yes!" answer, and explain why I am able to respond truthfully in this way, in most every case, our method of holiday shopping is something they have never considered before. It's not profound in any way, really, just practical and maybe a little "out there" to most, apparently.
There was a time only a few years ago, when we used that last "couple of days before" to frantically compete elbow to elbow with other like panic-stricken, wide-eyed scramblers. First of all, buying for each other - worrying about sizes, styles, tastes, "would this look good on me-isms?", colors, etc., just about drove us nuts every year, anyway. Maybe you've been there too.
In an initial effort to retain a modicum of sanity during this "rush", we started a holiday list about mid-summer with items we might want or need at the given time we wrote them down. These lists were exchanged a week or two before opening time. This method really didn't relieve the pressure or challenge of the above mentioned "problems".
Then, there was still the additional headache of what we would buy for the friends and family members we exchange gifts with. I hate to say it, but all of this uncertainty and trauma over what is supposed to be a joyful season, really took a lot of the enjoyment out of it for us.
Again, I want to emphasize, that our unlikely "method" is not an earth-shattering discovery on our part. It is just a practical approach for two busy people who have most everything of a material nature they will ever need. And, we always get gifts of things we really want! I love that about it.
Okay, enough with the grand buildup. Here's what we do now. In late summer, we start getting a major bevy of catalogs. We must be on every mailing list in the Universe. That's okay, though, we want to be. You see, by looking through these "wish books", we can bookmark items we really like, and ones we perceive some sort of … need … for. At least, they are items in styles and colors, or "gadgets", that we really like, could really "use". And, by sometime around Thanksgiving, each of our turned down pages, denoting our circled wish list items, has grown to a substantial number. A lot of the items have probably even been forgotten by then. Then, we just integrate items on this list into our respective budgets and order. It's that easy. The orders are filled quickly, there is plenty of time to make exchanges if necessary, and the gift receiver is able to exchange anything that doesn't fit or doesn't' look like it did in the catalog.
Well, there you have it. Not profound, but easy and effective. And, for whatever reason, the vast majority of my holiday shopping questioners I mentioned before, have never even thought of doing this. Maybe you have, but you would be in the low minority of the circles I travel.
And, last year, I took this ease of holiday shopping one step further. I found a discount online shopping mall featuring such stores as Coldwater Creek, Adidas, Cooking.com, Sears, Fragrance Net, J Crew, Spiegel, Eddie Bauer, Disney, KB Kids, Oshkosh, Radio Shack, and literally hundreds of others. By visiting these online stores through the links provided in the directory of the DHS Club (Discount Home Shopping), you not only get special additional savings to what they offer in their catalogs, you also get rebates from 2-21% on everything you buy. And membership in this club is absolutely FREE. Yes, there are higher levels of membership that you pay for and get additional benefits, opportunities and savings, but you DO NOT have to upgrade in any way to get FULL access to the hundreds of retailers represented.
My wife and I do all of our shopping for each other there now, and we've also used this online mall to complete our other gifting requirements. We also do a lot of additional shopping there during the non-holiday season, as well. It's easy, convenient, they're always offering "deals" and it's FREE. I recommend it highly, and feel you'll love the convenience and savings as much as we do. Go to http://www.marketbetter.com/dhs.htm and sign up. I'll make sure you get your very own exclusive password to the club mall. Happy Holidays and Happy Shopping from Dear Old Dave!
Dear Old Dave is President of A-D Trading Publishers And Marketers and has owned or operated over ten retail, wholesale and golf-related businesses. He is a Webmaster, Author, PGA Golf Professional, Gourmet Cook and a very serious student of Internet and Conventional Marketing. DOD publishes the free "Small Business Owners Unite!" Newsletter. See a sample at http://www.marketbetter.com/newsletter.htm
About the Author
Dear Old Dave, President, A-D Trading Publishers and Marketers, firstname.lastname@example.org Dave has owned or operated more than ten Retail, Wholesale and Golf-Related businesses, and has studied every aspect of successful marketing for more than thirty years now. He is a PGA Golf Professional, Author, Web Master, Wine Connoisseur, Gourmet Cook, former Snow Skiing Instructor and Editor of the free newsletter "Small Business Owners Unite!". Sign up at http://www.marketbetter.com D-O-D's other informational web sites include: http://www.reprint-gold.com http://www.dearolddave.com http://www.dodsgoldengoose.com
More articles by Dear Old Dave: