For most people, shopping strategies for holiday gifts involve nothing more than a two-minute search, a digital shopping cart and a credit card number. It is easy to shop for the usual things you know your friends and family need or want. But do we all want the same gifts each year? Maybe dad would like something else besides a sweater or tie this year. What about the things we might not even think about having? The best way to uncover these gems is – wait for it – shopping in the physical store! Technology can still be a valuable resource, both for planning and for the actual shopping trip itself, but nothing beats the in-store browsing experience.

Social media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter are great places to find gift ideas for that special someone – assuming you’re clever about it. Peruse your friend’s “Likes” and follow commonly posted items for themes. For example, did you notice things such as how your friends are posting a lot of fitness motivation quotes and healthy recipes? Are they keeping up with the latest news around a new Marvel Comic movie? That’s a good start. To find related local retail sales, tell Find&Save where you live, and you’ll be provided a comprehensive list of stores that can help you find what you need. There are many local sales around health- and fitness-related items like the Fitbit watch or scale. And a search for Marvel Comic will give you ample choices to browse through. After browsing through products and adding them to your shopping list – which you can access on-the-go via your mobile browser or Find&Save for iPhone – you are set.

Armed with a newfound understanding of your friend or family member and a comprehensive list of local sales, begin your shopping adventure. The part of physical retail shopping that online shopping will never be able to emulate is in-store discussion and the joy of having your gift in-hand without stressing over shipping schedules. You can chat with other shoppers and sales clerks to find something perfect that you otherwise may have never known existed.

Why is a physical shopping trip so much more fruitful than an online search? It has to do with the unbeatable discovery experience of products in the store and the people you are likely to meet along the way. If, as in most situations, you aren’t really sure what you are looking for, then how are you going to find inspiration searching online when all the Internet has to go off of is what you already know exists? Where is the wanderlust in that?

Brick-and-mortar shops are full of ideas – but you’ve got to get out there and take a look for yourself.