If it feels like back-to-school retail mania has started earlier than usual, guess what? You aren't wrong.
As annoying as that may be when we're trying to absorb the last few weeks of summer, the good news is that it gives us a ton of smart shopping opportunities both in stores and online.
Check out these money-saving tips and all the amazing deals.
To cut through the stress that back-to-school shopping entails, make a list before you head out. And keep the following in mind:
• Even if the brick and mortar store is down the street, the retailer may be offering a better deal, plus free shipping, on their website. I've asked why online deals can't be honored in person but most of the time they just can't. Figure out which scenario works in your favor and go with it.
• Consolidate your shopping by finding one store that satisfies the needs of all of your kids. The more you spend in one place, the more you will save.
• If there's a retailer you find yourself returning to over and over again, "like" their Facebook page, sign up for their emails, their newsletters, etc., and you'll be rewarded with coupons or whatever inside deals they're offering. You can always unsubscribe in October.
• Check independent coupon websites on a daily basis for deals you can print or use when you checkout online.
And here's a list of some of the retailers who are already cutting prices:
• J.C.Penney is making a big bet on their new Joe Fresh Kids line from the Canadian retailer. The looks are pretty adorable, plus there's free shipping and a greater savings percentage the more you spend.
• Kmart is offering promo-codes online including 15 percent off $75 on kids' clothing and 25 percent off on all backpacks.
• Walmart has free shipping on kids' apparel and uniforms starting at $5.97
• Department stores are also a great bet. Lord & Taylor is offering an extra 15 percent off regular and sale items plus an extra 20 percent off clearance. Macy's website is chock full of deals and promotions.
• Children's Place has tagged all their basic denim $10 and offers free shipping on all orders.
• Aeropostale's P.S. line for juniors has sales on everything from sparkle tees to fleece jackets.
• Scroll through the offerings at Amazon, which is already advertising up to 40 percent off kids denim, jackets, and sweaters.
Spot a great back-to-school offer? Share it in the comments below!
Image via lori05871/Flickr