What Day to Shop? 12 Insider Tips on Store Markdowns

Updated August 3, 2020 by Kyle
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Have you ever been shopping the clearance rack at your favorite store and wonder when the heck they add new stuff to the rack? Or when do they markdown the stuff that is already on the clearance rack in an effort to get rid of it? Or when do stores put stuff on sale? So many questions, so little answers. Well, until now that is. I went through the painstaking research of figuring out when some of your popular retailers mark stuff down. I hit the streets in search of answers and here’s what I found…

Best Days to Shop? Store Markdown Days

Here’s the Official Markdown Calendar:

For reference, I created the below graphic to help you figure out which days to shop at your favorite stores.

Store Markdowns

Anthropologie

I have it on good authority that Anthropologie typically does their in-store markdowns starting on Monday and wrapping up by Tuesday.

This is when they either add items to the clearance section or further reduce stuff already in the clearance section.

Shop on Tuesdays and you’ll have the first dibs on newly marked-down merchandise.

Babies R Us

Expecting a baby, or need to buy something for one that has already popped out? Remember this one word….THURSDAY.

That is the single best day to shop in-store at Babies R Us.

Why you ask? Well, I got information from a very credible source that Thursdays are the day when employees have to be finished with their weekly markdowns, making it a great day to shop for a bargain.

Make sure you shop with a printable Babies R Us coupon as well to save even more money.

Best Buy

Shopping for electronics, appliances, or maybe a new laptop?

Shop on a Wednesday at your local Best Buy as that is the day they typically change pricing based on what competitors are adjusting.

Also, I have it on good authority that Sunday is also a solid day to shop at Best Buy in order to take advantage of any errors that might be printed in their Sunday newspaper circular.

CVS Drugstores

Shop early in the week. Like on a Monday or Tuesday if you can.

A manager told me that most CVS stores start their markdown process on Sunday, so shop early in the week and take advantage of the selection and savings.

The Gap

Did you know that if the price ends in .97 it typically will not go any lower at Gap? True, check it out yourself the next time you’re shopping.

How about the day Gap tends to mark stuff down?

I recently had a current Gap employee tell me they mark things down every two weeks on a Monday. Figure out which Monday and you’ll be good to go.

JCPenney

I just got word from a former JCPenney employee that they do their store markdowns on the 1st and 3rd Friday of every month.

She also said that when they do these twice monthly markdowns they put a blue price sticker on the items they are reducing.

She said the savings is often up to 75-90% off the original JCP price. Be sure to grab one of our printable JCPenney coupons as most are good for clearance and regular-priced items and really pile on the savings.

Joann Fabrics

According to many loyal Joann shoppers they mark things down on Sundays, making it a great day to shop, especially if you have a Joann printable coupon good for 40% off any one item.

A friendly sales associate also had the great advice of shopping on a Monday as the store is typically less crowded and you’ll still practically have first dibs on new markdowns.

Kohl’s

I had a super friendly sales associate tell me all about the markdown schedule at Kohl’s.

She told me that while they are constantly marking stuff down, and putting stuff on sale, the best days to shop occur twice a month.

They are the 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month. She said those 2 days are typically when they mark the most stuff down and mark it down for the biggest saving (percentage-wise).

Macy’s

Macy’s is notorious for starting their in-store markdowns on Sunday’s with the goal of being finished marking things down by Tuesday.

Shop on a Tuesday or Wednesday to get the first crack at newly marked down apparel, jewelry, and household items.

Most of the printable Macys coupons we get here on Rather-Be-Shopping.com can be used on clearance merchandise as well.

Marshalls

Here is what we know so far about Marshalls. They markdown their clothing twice a week.

The actual day seems to vary by store so just politely ask a store associate and try to get the inside scoop. We also have it on good authority that they do their markdowns early in the mornings.

Shopping for a deal on shoes? Marshalls marks down their shoe inventory every 2 to 3 weeks. Again, ask an employee about upcoming markdown days.

Old Navy

My wife was shopping at our local Old Navy store a while back and asked an employee about their markdown policy.

She was told they do markdowns, and add new stuff to the clearance rack, on Sunday and Monday, or sometimes early Tuesday morning.

So in order to get the best selection, consider shopping at Old Navy on a Monday or Tuesday, Wednesday at the very latest.

Also, before you head out on your next shopping trip, check our Old Navy coupons page for a printable coupon to help you save even more.

Pier 1 Imports

Thanks to reader Tatum, who works at Pier 1 for the inside scoop. She said they do their “markdowns every week on either Sunday evening or Monday morning before the store opens.”

She also said that when you’re shopping on a Monday and “find something you like, don’t be afraid to ask an associate to double check the price!”

Ross – Dress for Less

NEW info: Thanks to reader Kylie, “I was head of clearance at Ross and MONDAY is the day we only do mark downs.”

A friendly sales associate dropped the goods on when they do price reductions at Ross. He told me they mark stuff down, or put new items on clearance, starting on Monday and end by Tuesday evening.

So he recommended shopping on a Tuesday afternoon or early Wednesday to get the best shot at newly marked down items. He said this was especially true for shoes, luggage, apparel, and home decor items.

Target

Target has one of the most widely known markdown schedules around so I went to a great source for All Things Target and got the scoop on exactly when they mark things down.

Also, be sure to crack the price tag code on Target clearance stickers so you an score the best savings. Here is when they do their markdowns:

  • Monday – Electronics, Accessories, Kids Clothing, Books, Baby and Stationery
  • Tuesday — Domestics, Women’s Clothing, Pets and Market (food items)
  • Wednesday — Men’s Clothing, Health and Beauty, Diapers, Lawn & Garden items and Furniture
  • Thursday — Housewares, Lingerie, Shoes, Toys, Sporting Goods, Decor & Luggage
  • Friday — Auto, Cosmetics, Hardware, & Jewelry

Let me know if anyone has new information on this Target markdown schedule.

TJ Maxx

I was told by a TJ Maxx employee that they tend to be a little random on markdowns.

I was also told that the key to finding the best markdown deals tend to happen mid-week as most locations use those days to re-stock shelves and thus will add more stuff to clearance to make room.

New Information for TJ Maxx: Thanks to an anonymous TJ Maxx employee for setting the record straight. Here is the scoop: “Hi! I recently worked at TJ Maxx and markdowns are not on Wednesdays. We do markdowns in 2 cycles (cycle 1, & cycle 2). Cycle 1 is men’s, women’s apparel, juniors apparel, lingerie, and kids (toys and apparel). Cycle 2 is home, bath, handbags, jewelry, beauty, active accessories, shoes, and luggage. Mostly the weeks will vary.

We will markdown one cycle Monday-Thursday and then the next week, do subs (marking down already clearances items for a bigger discount the next Friday). Let’s say this week we marked down cycle 1, then next Friday, we do subs cycle 2. Then the week after, we markdown cycle 2, and the week after, is subs cycle 1. And sometimes we have final sales weeks where we put yellow stickers on items. It will be the lowest they go and if not sold, they are donated.

You can always just ask a TJ Maxx markdown employee nicely. the regular employees will not know the markdown calendar. All we ask is that you don’t rummage through our bin or racks. We separate them by no tickets/ damaged tickets/ and matches, wrong priced items, and clearance. Those items will be put on shelves within 30 minutes for your viewing pleasure. Hope this helps!”

Ask the Reader: What other stores do you have an insider tip for when it comes to their markdown schedule? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll get it added to my article, thanks!

(Note: Be aware that this is a rough estimate of when stores do their markdowns and should be used only as a guide. Results could vary by geographical location.)

By Kyle James

Photo credit to Kevin Dooley.

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Teelee

Do you have any information on the markdown schedule for Nordstrom Rack? Thanks!

Teelee

Thanks! It’s always been a mystery! Work quickly! 🙂

Tatum

I work at Pier 1 Imports and we do our markdowns every week on either Sunday evening or Monday morning before the store opens. Since there are so many things in the store, we often miss a bit during the markdown process.

Your best bet is to come in Mondays and if you find something you like, don’t be afraid to ask an associate to double check the price!

Sharon Dashnau

Hi I was wondering if anyone has the lowdown on Finishline? When is the best time to shop online for best deal/markdowns? Thanky for any info!

Latoya

I have been to youtube and all on the internet praying someone has markdown information about burkes outlet or burlington. We dont have much of a variety where i live this would help very much. Thanks in advance

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