But do you also think about small businesses?
"Small businesses are very easy to overlook in the hustle and bustle of advertising on the holidays," says Sue Nicholson, president and CEO of the Monroe Chamber of Commerce.
Nicholson said local stores support the local non-profits and schools, and even roads and parks through the sales tax.
"They support us throughout the year, so it's time to support them," she said.
Surveys say 147 million people are estimated to be out shopping for Black Friday this week.
The Accenture Holiday Shopping Survey shows consumers are expected to spend an average of $582 on holiday shopping this season --- 23 percent plan to spend more than $750.
Nicholson says small businesses hire the majority of employees across the United States.
"Shopping locally is actually much more beneficial than shopping at our big chain stores, because we make up such a huge portion of businesses today," said Kelly Brock, owner of K-Sera in West Monroe.
Even local businesses are organizing their own Black Friday and holiday season specials. Starting black friday, Trey Parker -- owner of Diamond Vault in Monroe -- is giving away iPads and iPhones with a certain amount purchased, through Christmas day.
He says shopping locally offers a different level of customer service during the hectic holiday season.
"We know your name, we know who you are -- you're like a part of our family and you're not just a number to us, you're not a spreadsheet," he said.
Some retailers are taking the discounts to cyberspace -- but overall, whether it's at a small or large store, Nichols encourages people to shop local.
"Whether you live in Richland parish, Ouachita parish, or Lincoln parish, it all stays here. It's not going to a corporate office, the deposits are not being made at night and going to new york or California, or wherever. It stays here," said Parker.
You can browse for local shops and small businesses by clicking here.
Nicholson also gave us a few of tips to share when it comes to holiday shopping:
- Make a list of what you want before you shop to avoid impulse buying.
- Set a budget limit for yourself.
- Stay in the positive Christmas spirit.
- Have an idea of you will be buying ahead of time.
- Keep expectations realistic, you may not always find the best deal you hoped for.