1. They don't settle for "good" deals.
Smart shoppers know there's always more to save—with coupons, promo codes, cash back and credit card rewards. "The best way to save is to combine strategies," says , Emmy Award-winning consumer reporter and savings expert for .
2. They do their research.
Is that TV really worth you waking up at the crack of dawn? Think twice if it's marked so low you can't believe it, says Pavini. "Some are off-brand TVs created with lower specs so they can be offered for dirt-cheap on big sale days," she explains. Check out the best deals for Black Friday 2015.
3. They read the fine print.
Some Black Friday deals are limited to what the store has in stock. Find out what your chances of snagging that super-affordable laptop are before waiting in line. Pavini also reminds consumers to ask about restocking fees; some stores won't give a full refund on returned electronics.
4. They shop with a buddy.
Melissa Jennings of always brings a friend along. As soon as the doors open, one person grabs a spot in the checkout line while the other makes a beeline for the big-ticket items.
5. They bring their own snacks.
Shopping can work up an appetite. Jennings recommends consumers BYOS so they don't blow their savings on expensive hot cocoa and other tempting goodies.
6. They pay with credit cards.
Take advantage of credit card rewards points, cash back, and linked offers. Coupons.com lets users by using that card at select retailers. (Many banks and credit unions have similar offers.) For example, Aéropostale customers can earn a $10 gift card when they make a purchase of $20 or more with a registered credit card. That's an incredible added savings when you consider that many clothing retailers slashed prices by up to 60 percent sitewide last Cyber Monday—just be sure to pay off your balance immediately!
7. They stack coupons on top of deals.
Buying something on sale, with a coupon, using a credit card that offers rewards or cash back is the ultimate trifecta of savings. Jennings brings any potentially applicable coupons with her on Black Friday. Check out for a list of coupon codes that'll work on the big day. Online, "to not use a coupon code is insane," says Pavini. "There are codes for everything from travel to wine. At the very least you'll get free shipping."
8. They use apps.
Who needs a coupon binder when a smartphone will do? Apps from and allow users to see nearby deals, and offer coupons to use online or in-store.
9. They focus on lower end items.
The largest percentage discounts are on smaller everyday appliances. "While you'll save a little on the top of the line stand mixer, you can save a ton on the waffle maker or toaster," says Pavini.
10. They're open to last year's models.
Do you really need the latest iPad? With electronics, many times the current version features just the smallest change from the prior year's model. Pavini once had her eye on a $1,500 TV and scored the previous year's model for $750.
11. They don't buy the extended warranty.
Unless the electronic you're buying is new to the market this year, the warranty isn't necessary—especially if you're paying with a credit card, says Pavini. Most cards from American Express, Visa, Master Card and Discover . For example, Pavini says warranties for plasma or HD TVs the year they first came out would've been okay because manufacturers hadn't had "a year to work out the bugs."
12. They shop for themselves, too.
Look for "gifts with purchase" on items you'll need in the coming year. Typically, department store cosmetics and fragrances don't go on sale, says Pavini, but now is a great time to stock up for cheap with incentives like "free with purchase" bonus packs and gift sets.
13. They go to off-the-grid stores.
Stockpiling Moms' Jennings does her Black Friday shopping at often-overlooked stores like Ace Hardware and Michael's. Outlet malls are a favorite, too: "I can go at night when they open and still do really well because stores have great sales on top of their already discounted prices," she says. (But note that certain retailers will be closed altogether this year.)
14. They ask for what they want.
If the item you want runs out of stock, ask for rain check, suggests Pavini. It may be against store policy to issue rain checks on Black Friday deals, but you don't know until you ask. She also suggests calling the outlet mall management offices and asking how to get additional discounts on Black Friday; most offer a percentage off for signing up for their newsletter.
When shopping online, open a customer service chat window. "Ask them if you're missing any promo codes or if there's any way you can get an additional deal," says Pavini, adding that compliments and kindness will get you far. Try a script like this: "I'm a huge fan of your company, I love this product but I'm on a budget this Christmas and it's just a bit out of my range. Are there any coupons or discounts I should be aware of?"
15. They take advantage of price adjustments.
Most stores offer a14-day price adjustment period, according to Pavini. Save your receipt, mark your calendar, and check with the store on the 14th day. If the price has dropped, ask for a price adjustment refund. There might be some exclusions with Black Friday deals, Pavini says, but it depends on the store.
16. They don't feel pressured to shop.
Some people don't want to sacrifice family time on Thanksgiving to get a good deal, and that's okay. Don't feel like you're missing out because you skip Black Friday. Pavini says there are incredible deals to be had throughout the holiday season, and most of the above strategies can be used in person or online, at any time.