I'll admit it…I really dislike shopping, especially when I have to make a special trip to purchase an item. So, I try to shop online as much as possible. And one of my go-to online stores is Amazon.
I made my first purchase (a book!) on Amazon way back in 1998, and I've discovered lots of tips to save money at Amazon, including:
- Deal of the Day – Each day, Amazon has several Deals of the Day that are usually the best prices found on that item. Some items will sell out quickly, but for many items you can shop the deal all day.
- Lightning Deals – During the holidays (usually the months of November and December), Amazon has tons of Lightning Deals on all types of products from toys to electronics. For a short period of time (and for a limited number of products), Amazon lowers the price dramatically. If it's a popular deal, it can sell out in seconds, so you have to be ready to purchase. But, I've gotten some great deals in the past by shopping the Lightning Deals. Amazon typically lists the products that will be included in each day's Lightning Deals first thing in the morning.
- Competitive Prices – Amazon works really hard to match (or beat) its competitor's prices. They tend to have some of the best prices on products around (although not always). You can always check the historical prices at Amazon for a product on Camel Camel Camel.
- Digital Coupons at Amazon – Did you think that you can only use coupons in-store? Not so. At any given time, Amazon has dozens of products with eCoupons to help you save even more. I love to order an item at Amazon when it's already a good deal and then save even more with the coupon without having to take the time to cut out a coupon and go to the store.
- Amazon Subscribe & Save – You can save an extra 5% off the price of a product when you purchase using Subscribe & Save (which basically means you sign up for Amazon to send you the product regularly) and you get FREE shipping on your order. And, when Amazon sends you 5 or more Subscribe & Save products in the same month, you save 15% on each item instead of just 5%. Subscribe & Save is a great way to save on the basics like toilet paper, paper towels, etc without even having to think about it. Plus, you can cancel your subscription at any time, if the price doesn't work for you anymore. Subscribe & Save is particularly good for items like toilet paper, paper towels, diapers, etc.
- Request a Price-Change Refund – If the price for a product that you just bought goes down within 7 days of delivery, you can request a price-change refund via customer service on Amazon. It's not guaranteed, but if you ask nicely, you're likely to get a refund or at least some Amazon credit.
- Pre-order Price Guarantee – when you preorder a book, CD, video, DVD, software, or video game from Amazon, it includes the pre-order price guarantee. If the price drops before the release date, Amazon will charge you the lowest price when your order ships.
- FREE Super Saver Shipping – Get FREE shipping at Amazon when you buy $35 worth of items shipped directly from Amazon's warehouses. If you were going to spend $35 anyway, you might as well save money on shipping.
- Amazon Prime Membership – With an Amazon Prime membership, not only do you get FREE 2-day shipping on almost everything, but Amazon has also started running specials for Prime members only (like $30 off select Kindle Readers for Prime members only), and Prime members can shop many Lightning Deals 30 minutes before everyone else. Plus, you get FREE streaming video and music, and FREE photo cloud storage.
- Amazon Mom – If you have an Amazon Prime membership, you can also qualify for Amazon Mom, which saves you an extra 20% off diapers and wipes at Amazon – making for some great deals.
- Amazon Student – Students with a .edu e-mail address can get a FREE 6-month trial of Amazon Prime (rather than the normal 30-day trial for everyone else).
- Warehouse Deals – Save big on refurbished and open-box items at Amazon. Usually small quantities are available at great prices and usually include a warranty. Be sure to check the descriptions to get all the details.
- Amazon Outlet – It's like shopping the clearance racks in-store. You can find some great deals in the Outlet, but like the clearance racks, deals can be hit-or-miss.
- Amazon Freebies – Amazon offers lots of freebies on their site, including lots of FREE Kindle books, music, and more.
- Earn FREE Amazon gift cards through Swagbucks – With Swagbucks, you earn points (called SB) that you can use to get FREE Amazon gift cards – just 500 points equals a $5 Amazon gift card. Earn points by searching, watching videos, and more.