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This March marks one year since the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a pandemic, leaving many to reflect on the past 12 months — and shoppers are no exception. Experts told us retail trends have changed drastically during the pandemic, especially in terms of how and what people are shopping for. According to market research and advisory outfit Forrester, 84 percent of U.S. adults are buying the same amount or more online because of Covid-19. Of the adults who bought more on Amazon during the pandemic than they had before, 46 percent expect they will continue to do so after the pandemic ends. Retailers had to shift faster than ever before during the pandemic given these behaviors, and have seen increased performance as a result, said Sucharita Kodali, the vice president and principal analyst at Forrester. For example, Amazon, Walmart and Target have been able to meet increased customer demand despite bumps in the road last spring. Now, Kodali said, retailers are asking themselves whether or not “eCommerce orders will just fall off a cliff once people go ‘back to normal’ (whatever that means).” And they’re certainly not idle while they wait to find out.
March 20 marks the first official day of spring and, with temperatures finally warming up after a snowy winter, retailers are already discounting winter products to make room for spring inventory. Families are preparing to go on Covid-safe vacations, road trips and staycations during spring break, too, leading luggage brands, airfare and hotels to offer discounts. If you’re on the market right now and want to save a few dollars, we’re here to help: We consulted retail experts about the best deals to shop this month, as well as what you should wait until April to buy.
Biggest sales happening right now
To give you an idea of the most substantial sales right now, here are some of the deepest discounts from Shoppin reader-favorite brands and retailers.
- Adidas: up to 50 percent off for their Spring Sale through March 25.
- ASOS: extra 25 percent off select styles with code OUTLET25.
- BaubleBar: up to 80 percent off select sales styles.
- Bed, Bath and Beyond: 20 percent off select coffee makers, 25 percent off food storage containers and up to $100 off select vacuums.
- The Company Store: up to 20 percent off sitewide with code BFF2021.
- Cricut: up to $80 off Cricut makers, including the Explore Air 2, as well as free shipping on orders $99 and more with code MARSHIP.
- Everlane: up to 60 percent off select styles for men and women.
- The Home Depot: up to 40 percent off bath items and up to 30 percent off select tools.
- HSN: sales on select Apple items and $5 off beautypurchases $25 or more with code 188125.
- Kohl's: 20 percent off beauty items, including skincare and haircare through March 21, as well as up to 25 percent off select styles by FLX.
- Lenovo: up to 71 percent off select doorbusters and select electronics, as well as up to 10 percent off select accessories
- Macy’s: 20 to 50 percent off select styles for spring.
- Madewell: 20 percent off purchases $100 or more and 30 percent off purchases $200 or more with code HOWFUN.
- Nordstrom: up to 60 percent off sale styles
- The North Face: up to 40 percent off select winter styles.
- Rendall Co.: 50 percent off face masks.
- Saks Fifth Avenue: up to 75 percent off select styles.
- Sand&Sky: free face roller with purchases $50 or more with code ROLLON, as well as 20 percent off sitewide and an extra 20 percent off kits from March 18 through March 21.
- Target: up to 30 percent off kitchen appliances, up to 25 percent off home items such as furniture, lighting and home decor and up to 20 percent off TVs and home theaters.
- Vistaprint: 25 percent off fast ship masks when you buy three or more with code FAST25.
- Wayfair: 60 percent off for their March Clearance Event through March 16.
Best deals to shop right now
On top of the larger sales listed above, we compiled some of our favorite deals to keep an eye on right now and into the coming month.
According to the brand, the knives are made from high quality stainless steel and sport a lightweight design without compromising strength and durability. Each blade has a satin polish finish and the triple-rivet handles feature ergonomic designs. The knives fit into a hardwood block and are all dishwasher safe, except for the knife block, which should just be wiped down.
This PowerXL air fryer can also be used as a dehydrator, baking oven, pizza oven, roaster and more. It can heat up to 400 degrees and sports an LCD screen with 10 pre-set temperature settings. When you're finished you can pop the removable trays into your dishwasher, making it relatively easy to clean. If you're looking to make larger dishes or feed more people, you can find it in a larger 10-Quart option.
Shopping reader-favorite Everlane when it comes to sweaters is currently offering a slew of winter styles on sale. Among them is the retailer's popular and highly-rated Glove Boot. It's made from a blend of recycled polyester, wool, nylon and elastane which makes for a snug and stylish fit like a glove. It also sports a 2-inch heel and rib detailing. Plus, it comes in eight colors, including Charcoal Wool, Cumin, Seafoam, Tobacco and more. And if you prefer footwear with an open toe, Everlane offers a similar mule option.
If you enjoy baking or making your own sauces and soups, you may want to consider a hand mixer. The Chefman hand mixer is also ideal for making smoothies since its cross blades can handle a variety of mixing needs, including crushing ice. The rubber handle sports an ergonomic design and a push button that lets you alternate between two speeds. The protective guard over the blade is meant to prevent any messes as you blend your ingredients together. The stainless steel blending stick detaches from the handle, and you can throw it in the dishwasher for easy clean-up.
These true wireless earbuds are designed with premium AKG technology that is meant to deliver a full-bodied sound. When fully charged, you can get up to 11 hours of listening time, and just three minutes of charging will give you an hour of battery life. The Galaxy Buds+ come equipped with an Ambient Aware mode for when you want to be more in tune with your surroundings. When paired with a Samsung compatible device, you can use Wireless PowerShare for a quick charge by sharing your phone's battery.
As we begin to transition out of winter and into spring, you may be looking for a warm-yet-lightweight jacket to ease into the warmer temperatures. The North Face Campshire Pullover Hoodie comes with an ‘ultra-soft’ Sherpa fleece and equips the brand’s highest warmth rating. The quarter-zip hoodie also features woven elbow patches meant to increase durability. The kangaroo pocket comes with zippers on each side and the jacket is designed in a relaxed fit. You can choose from six colors, including Brandy Brown/Aviator Navy, Burnt Olive Green/New Taupe Green, Aviator Navy/Mallard Blue, Bleached Sand/Burnt Olive Green, Timber Tan/Aviator Navy, and TNF Black.
With Spring comes rain and you may want to make sure your dog is ready for those wet walks with their very own raincoat. This anorak coat is designed to be lightweight and water-resistant to keep your dog as dry as possible on those rainy days. It comes equipped with adjustable fabric closures to ensure the best fit for your furry friend. A back-flap pocket with a zipper enclosure allows you to store treats or waste bags. The jacket comes in Pink or Green and is available in small, medium and large sizes.
What to buy in March
Sarah Skirboll, shopping and trends expert at savings and deals finder RetailMeNot told us that March often offers deals on sunglasses given the upcoming sunny months, with more than 30 percent off and buy-one-get one deals from retailers like Sunglasses Hut and EyeBuyDirect.
Likewise and looking backward, Vipin Porwal, founder and consumer savings expert at Smarty, another savings and deals finder, noted that winter clothing usually goes on sale this month as retailers look to move cold weather wear out and fill their shelves with spring collections. Porwal said stores like REI, Patagonia, Columbia, Land’s End will likely offer deals in the 50- to 80-percent-off range. He recommends shopping winter sales early as the best deals in the most popular sizes and colors move quickly.
Porwal noted that shoppers interested in finding ways to practice better wellness and hygiene during the pandemic, from adding air purifiers to their homes to installing touchless technology like motion sensor faucets, should be able to find sales offering between 20 to 40 percent off these types of items.
Additionally, many winter sports items like running, hiking, fishing, cycling and camping gear are expected to be discounted. Dicks, Academy, Cabelas and Bass Pro Shops will all feature discounts ranging from 10 to 30 percent off new gear and accessories, too. Porwal also said last year’s Fitbits and smartwatches will soon go on sale.
While you may not be traveling anytime soon, Skirboll also noted that March is usually a great time to book domestic airfare, as deals can be up to 80 percent off. She suggested browsing websites like Priceline, and if you’re thinking about a staycation, Hotels.com. Skirbol said to read the fine print of any airfare or hotel deals to learn about associated rebooking or penalty fees. And on a similar note, look out for some of the best luggage sales of the year, according to Porwal. He said luggage deals will be between 40 and 60 percent on rolling bags and luggage sets, some even rivaling Black Friday prices.
What not to buy in March
Porwal said March shoppers will want to wait for April sales on lawn and garden supplies. Come April, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Menards, Ace, Walmart and Amazon often offer the widest selection of lawn and gardening products. Expected discounts in April should see up to 30 percent off items like seed, fertilizers, insecticides and plants, bulbs, shrubs and trees, with similar discounts on typical lawn and garden tools and equipment.
Since March brings the official start of spring, Skirbol said retailers will be stocking shelves with new arrivals, recommending waiting to purchase spring clothing until later this year. Skirbol also said the next best time to buy big ticket furniture items would be in May during Memorial Day weekend. Finally, like furniture, appliances like washers, dryers, and ovens won't see deep discounts again until May or later in the year during Labor Day Weekend.