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Where to shop for the best Black Friday deals

  • Retailers will offer average discounts of 37 percent to kick off holiday shopping season.
  • Certain stores are expected to be even more generous with their deals.
  • Consumers should follow specific tips to make sure they're getting the best offers.
People shop at Macy's Herald Square store in New York City on November 25, 2016.
Mohammed Elshamy | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
People shop at Macy's Herald Square store in New York City on November 25, 2016.

To find the best prices on Black Friday, it pays to be picky about where you shop.

Personal finance website WalletHub ranked the retailers offering the best average discounts on the day after Thanksgiving. The list includes the biggest advertised discounts, based on the website's analysis of 35 of the largest U.S. retailers.

While the average retailer will offer discounts of 37.1 percent, these 10 big-name stores are offering more substantial deals:

Retailer Average discount
Kohl's 66.3%
JCPenney 66.3%
Belk 62.8%
Stage 60.8%
Shopko 55.9%
Bealls Florida 52.8%
Sears 50.1%
Macy's 45.6%
Fred Meyer 43.9%
AAFES 37.3%
All Retailers 37.1%
Source: WalletHub

Shoppers should keep that average discount in mind as they hit the stores and online this week, according to WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez.

"If you see something that is marked down as less than 37 percent, you might not be getting a true Black Friday deal," Gonzalez said.

The top three areas where Black Friday discounts will be concentrated are apparel and accessories, with discounts averaging 28.03 percent; computers and phones, at 10.61 percent; and appliances, at 9.9 percent, according to WalletHub.

"If you see something that is marked down as less than 37 percent, you might not be getting a true Black Friday deal." -Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub

But keep in mind that some categories — such as jewelry, apparel, accessories and furniture — will likely have even deeper discounts later in the holiday season.

"Something in your cart that is 20 percent off now might be 25 percent off the week before Christmas," Gonzalez said.

Other highly sought-after categories such as toys, computers and personal electronics will likely have the best quantities and prices in November.

"That is when the Black Friday deal is one of the best you're going to get," Gonzalez said.

Shoppers should also be sure to steer clear of zero percent interest or special financing deals that are often actually deferred interest plans that can result in unexpected bills later.

When presented with the choice between zero percent interest for six months or a discount at the time of purchase, "always go with the latter choice if it's available," Gonzalez said.

To help plan your Thanksgiving holiday shopping, see this.

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