The 11.11 sale is approaching, and AliExpress reminds that to us with every chance they get.
This year it’s a hit and miss; just like the stock market, it seems to be a zero-sum game. There are some really good deals, and there are some where you would pay more than you normally would.
The Truth About the 11.11 Sale
The 11.11, or November 11 Sale starts on November 11 at 12 AM PST (LA/Vancouver, BC/Seattle/San Diego/Baja California time zone) and goes on until November 12, 12 AM – a total of only 24 hours.
It is called Single’s Day sale – hence the repeating 1’s in the date. There usually are some good deals (see our 2023 ULTIMATE 11.11 GUIDE) on various Chinese E-Commerce shops during this sale, while some deals appear to be not so genuine.
I’ve had some tabs open from the last weekend, and, surprise-surprise: what then was the original price is now an 11.11 price, and the “regular” price is increased by a few bucks.
As such, I suggest you treat the 11.11 sale with extreme caution, as it appears that a lot of AliExpress sellers are getting sneaky.
And here is why.
Some examples of good and bad prices.
I bought these pants at a sale about a year ago for $12.50. Great pants, I really like them (as a matter of fact, I’m wearing them right now), but they were getting too stretched to wear outside, so I wanted to buy another pair. But couldn’t find them for any less than $18.
On the 11.11 event of 2015 I could find them for $12.50 again.
Morale: In some cases when the deal will be good.
Neoprene (who thought it would be a good idea?) touchscreen-friendly motorcycle gloves.
I paid $8.62 per piece for them when I bought them for re-selling, and now the 11.11 price is at $6.99 per piece. When I checked the Related Products grid, I found the same gloves sold by a different seller at $6.97 (which isn’t even an 11.11 price).
And, to make things even more confusing, I saw the same gloves at $9.00, $8.41 and $7.42, all of which are sale prices.
Morale: Check yourself before you wreck yourself. The deal may seem good, even in comparison with the previous regular price, but it still isn’t the best price you can find. Double and triple check the prices with other sellers before you click the “buy” button.
Pro-Biker A005 casual riding boots. I bought these for my ex for $56.99, which was the cheapest price at the time. I used to keep tabs on the bike gear prices because I was reselling them a t the time. The prices dropped a bit, but I haven’t seen them any cheaper than $47.
Except for the 2014’s 11.11 sale, when I saw them for $33 and couldn’t resist getting them for myself.
Morale: There are sellers that hook us up with good deals. But it helps if you know the prices.
A few tips for surviving 11.11:
- Do not buy things only because you think the discount is good.
- Try not to buy things that you don’t need, but you think you may need (because most likely you won’t).
- Compare the 11.11 price with the regular price – the easiest way to do it is to use a price tracker extension (desktop only). This extension called AliPrice saves historical prices of items, so you can see if the seller just inflated the price to drop it, or if they are actually providing a discount.
- If you decide that you need something, add the products to the cart in advance, and get discount coupons. Even if the price is the same as the regular price, you can still get $2 off using the AliExpress coupon, which is a decent discount if you buy something that’s $10 or less.
- Check the store coupons. Some stores like this one have special discounts, in this case $3 off a $4 purchase.
- USE CASHBACK! I cannot stress this enough: if you’re not using a cashback service, you’re wasting money. EPN’s BackIt gives you 5-7% on average on most AliExpress purchases, and some products are up to whopping 90%. It means that if you spend $50, you should get $2.50-5.50 (or $45, if you’re really lucky). Create an account / install the app, follow the instructions to activate (one click before you buy something), and get the money back once you reach the withdrawal threshold – from $0.20 – by PayPal/bank account. Follow the link below to get a cashback account.
Nevertheless, there are some good 11.11 deals – especially the promo deals, where the seller lowers the cost with the hope of generating enough sales to get a good rating, or to promote their other products with a higher profit margin.