And finally, the "Black Friday" concept is often used to dump excess inventory, rather than discount the hottest products. If stores find themselves saddled with old products that people aren't buying, they might be tempted to slap "Black Friday" labels on them in order to dump them on naïve customers.
The only way to avoid both these scams is to do your homework. Know exactly what you want to buy and what the prices are before Black Friday, and compare those prices to deals offered elsewhere. When you find an incredibly good and rare price on a specific product, get in line early and make a bee-line for the item.
I also recommend that you go for the big ticket items. Think about the things that you intend to buy anyway: TV sets, tablet computers, PCs, smart phones, and so on and find the cheapest prices you can. Lower-ticket items where you save only a dollar or two just aren't worth the trouble.
If you're responding to advertised Black Friday prices, bring the ad. Sometimes the cashier didn't get the memo.
You should also note that the majority of Black Friday deals are available online. So if you find an advertised price, go ahead and search for that same product on the online discount stores and see if you can beat it. If you can't, you know you'll have a bona fide Black Friday bargain.
There is always uncertainty surrounding Black Friday deals. You may stand in line for hours, for example, and still not get the product. One tried and true approach is to buy the product you want in advance of Black Friday at the lowest price you can as long as the store you buy it from has a return policy.
Then, on Black Friday itself try to beat the price you paid. If you're successful, you can return the first one you purchased. If you're unsuccessful, well, you still got a pretty good price.
Be smart, and avoid getting suckered by an ill-informed impulse buy. Oh, and try not to get trampled.