Amazon is expected to control 50% of the online e-commerce market by the end of 2018. With approximately 35 orders placed every second of the day, the company is responsible for more than 1.1 billion orders annually. If you’re part of the Amazon masses, there’s a very good chance you aren’t optimizing your buying habits to both SAVE and EARN money while shopping on the platform. You can even save money on Amazon while shopping at the company’s competitors!
From simple buying tips to technology that will guarantee you the lowest purchase price, we’ve collected the best tips for shopping on Amazon.
Wait until you see how easy it is to track pricing history so you can always buy at the best price!
CamelCamelCamel Will Monitor Prices And Help You Save
CamelCamelCamel.com is a platform that allows Amazon shoppers to enter product keywords or a direct URL to an Amazon product. Once you select a product you can see the items 30-day price fluctuations for both new and used versions of the product you are interested in purchasing.
If the price is at an all-time low you can purchase the item by clicking on a link provided by the platform. You can also set up alerts and the company will email you when the price is selling at a low-cost point.
The Honey App
The Honey App has taken the e-commerce world by storm. Using a simple Chrome Extension you can apply the best available coupons to every single purchase you make online. The Honey app works with hundreds of top retailers including Walmart, Target, Groupon, Expedia, and others.
We love the Honey App for Amazon because it tracks the lowest prices on items and applies coupons to your purchases as you shop. Imagine grabbing the lowest possible price on an Amazon purchase and then also receiving additional money off with help from a Honey-provided coupon code. Plus, it’s 100% free to use!
The Amazon Store Card
We have to start out by noting that you won’t save money if you rack up a huge bill on your Amazon Store Card and don’t pay it off in full each month. With that being said, the perks of having a store card are pretty amazing.
When using your Amazon store card you can choose 5% cash back on all of your purchases. Conversely, you can also choose 6, 12, and 24 month same-as-cash options depending on how much you spend. Choose the 5% cash back option and combine your purchase with Honey or CamelCamelCamel and your savings rack up very quickly!
Take Advantage of Digital Credits By Waiting Longer For Your Items
Amazon Prime customers can receive most packages with free two-day shipping. That’s a great offer if you need your item very quickly. But what about products you don’t mind waiting a few extra days to receive?
If you skip the Prime two-day shipping and choose the standard option Amazon will give you a $1 digital credit that can be used to purchase and rent movies and other digital goods. Here’s a pro-tip, order your items individually and you’ll receive multiple credits. Plus, Amazon will likely still ship the item in a single box and many items still arrive in just a few short days.
$3 a Month For a Few Simple Clicks
Okay maybe ShopTracker won’t make you rich but you can earn $36 a year by simply sharing your Amazon purchase history with the company once every month. There are a few caveats though. For example, it only works with Windows-based PCs and Android phone.
Once you share your shopping history you’ll receive a $3 Visa e-gift card within 48 hours, right to your email! The company receives your information after it has stripped out your name, address, payment info, and other identifiers.
Sign Up For Ibotta To Earn $20 Right Away
Thinking about making the jump to Amazon Prime? First, download the Ibotta app (Android and iOS) and then sign up for Prime through the app to immediately earn $20! Plus, Ibotta will give you $10 after your first use!
Ibotta allows customers to earn cash back by scanning their receipts and UPC codes for select products from hundreds of merchants. With Amazon you can use the app to save cash on various product categories. For example, you can save 5% on home services, 3% on clothing, 3% on pet supplies, and much more!
Save Money At Amazon By Walking Into Other Stores
Shopkick allows customers to earn in three different ways. First, you will earn points simply for walking into partnering stores. Second, you earn more rewards by scanning certain items while in those stores, and third, you earn when you actually purchase items.
The best part about this program is that your rewards are transferred into gift cards of your choosing. One of those available gift cards is from Amazon. That’s right, you can earn free Amazon money by walking into and shopping at Walmart, Target, and others.
Use Amazon-Provided Coupons! It’s Actually Really Simple
Many Amazon shoppers are not aware that the company provides its own digitally “clippable” coupons. AAmazon coupons can be used on everything from home goods to pet supplies, and electronics.
It’s not uncommon to find 30% off coupons in the coupons section and there are plenty of $1.00 off coupons for everyday items you were probably planning to purchase regardless of having a coupon at your disposal. Just remember, it’s only saving money if you actually need the product and you aren’t impulsively buying items just because a coupon is available.
Try Amazon Alexa Voice Shopping
If you own an Amazon Alexa Dot, Echo Show, or any other Alexa products capable of voice shopping you could save some money by simply inputting your orders directly into your cart using just your voice.
To promote voice ordering Amazon often provides discounts on products. I recently received $5 off any order and my Amazon Alexa Show also offered me a discount for a “re-order” of the dog food I purchase every month for my pets. Amazon is really pushing voice shopping so the offers tend to be fairly regular.
Allow Amazon To Email You But Only For Stuff You Want
Amazon Delivers is an email based subscription service that allows customers to choose which categories they want to receive solicited offers from. For example, you could choose only beauty products or automotive offers.
Amazon promises to deliver only their best deals, best selling products, and products of interest to your inbox. In our test, there were both hits and misses but we loved knowing when product categories we generally care about are offering deals that are sometimes too good to pass up. You can tell Amazon how often you want to receive offers and even enable offers for your Amazon Alexa devices.
Shop The Amazon Warehouse
Amazon Warehouse is your one-stop shop for finding discounted items that have been refurbished. You can also find open box and other products at deep discounts. This platform is great if you need a certain product category but not necessarily a specific product.
Keep in mind that you are receiving an item that isn’t new but each item is checked over by Amazon and given a final stamp of approval before being sold to customers. Amazon Warehouse also rents out used textbooks which can save big money on education costs.
Shop Amazon Renewed
Amazon Renewed is a division of the company that focuses on refurbishing products to "like new" status. Unlike Amazon Warehouse, which provides open-box and other items at a discount, these products are fully-vetted for quality assurance.
Products on Amazon Renewed are inspected, tested by qualified suppliers to work and look like new, and come with a minimum 90-day supplier-backed warranty. From electronics to kitchenware, you’ll be amazed at what you’ll find and how cheap some of these "like new" and warrantied items cost.
Take Advantage Of Amazon Subscribe And Save
Items that you regularly purchase on a monthly or bi-monthly schedule can earn you instant savings using the Amazon subscribe & save feature. This option allows for automatic shipping of your favorite items, typically with a 5% to 10% discount.
The best part about Subscribe & Save, outside of the immediate savings, is the ability to turn the feature on and off as needed. If you require $100 per month in orders, you can save $60 per year using this feature or nearly one month of free products!
Use The Percentage Off Search Trick
If you are searching for a certain type of product on Amazon you can find discounted items by adding “&pct-off=50-70” at the end of the search that populates in the address bar. Simply replace “50” and “70” with the percentages you want to track.
Just tack on the PCT code at the end of a URL and you’ll see a notice in the header that reads along the lines of: Coffee Makers: 50% to 70% off.
Use The Amazon Trade-In Program to Save Cash
Amazon wants you to return items you previously purchased and the company will give you Amazon gift cards based on the value of each trade-in. From school books to electronics, there is a wide array of items you can trade in for cash.
If you visit the Amazon trade-in section you’ll see items that Amazon wants to buy back from you, making it easy to understand how much money you could earn. Amazon is currently telling me they want to buy back $366.37 worth of items from me.
Pre-Order Items For A Guarantee You Shouldn’t Pass Up
Amazon regularly shows pre-order items on its website. These items are not yet available to the public but they are on the way. You don’t pay for any of these items until they ship, giving you time to change your mind before they are made available.
The best part? Amazon guarantees that not a single competitor will offer a better price on video games, electronics, and thousands of other pre-ordered items. If you find the item you’ve pre-ordered at a lower cost, Amazon will match that price. Just remember, it only applies to items sold to you directly by Amazon.
Share Your Prime Membership To Help Someone Else Save
Did you know Amazon gives you the ability to share your Amazon Prime account? Amazon allows one other adult to receive Prime shipping benefits under the Amazon Household feature. Just remember, they don’t gain access to all of Prime’s features, such as Amazon Prime Video.
Simply access your Amazon Prime account and choose the Household feature. You’ll enter the email address your family member or friend uses on Amazon and they’ll give them free access to 2-day Prime Shipping. If they don’t care about Prime Video you can even split the annual cost and save $60 a day.
Late Packages? Talk To Customer Service For Some Added Bonuses
Amazon takes customer delivery times very seriously. There were even news reports of USPS workers claiming to have dropped off packages not yet in their possession just so Amazon wouldn’t complain to their managers. If your package arrives after the 2-day Prime shipping guarantee, reach out to customer service.
Amazon will often give you $5 cash back and in some cases they’ll extend your Prime Membership by an entire month! This doesn’t happen every time and we’ve found that being really nice to your Amazon customer service representative is the best way to receive a monetary apology.
Save On Family Items
This one goes out to all the parents who purchase diapers, rash creams, and other childcare essentials on Amazon. Check out Amazon Family. This program offers an immediate 20% discount on diapers and various discounts on other items you likely use on a daily basis.
This program, much like subscribe & save, sends out your much needed items on a monthly basis. Not only do you receive 20% discounts on diapers but also 15% off other items. If you have a baby registry Amazon will even give you a 15% off coupon once your registry is fully purchased.
Sign Up For Amazon ‘Prime Student’
Here’s another offer specifically for one group of individuals. Amazon ‘Prime Student" offers a six-month free trial to the full Amazon Prime suite of features, including Amazon Prime Video and free two-day shipping.
After six months students pay only $6.49. You just need a .edu email account to take advantage of this offer which nearly cuts the cost of Prime shipping in half. Of course, you’ll have to have some type of disposable income to fully take advantage of the ordering part of the platform which might be out of reach for some college students.
Don’t Have A Credit Card? Ebates Has Your Cash Back Covered
Don’t worry about cash back if you don’t have a credit card, you can still earn money for shopping on Amazon. Sign up for a 100% free Ebates account and shop through the company’s online portal which delivers all of the products Amazon has to offer.
As an added bonus, you can also receive up to 40% off for shopping on other e-commerce platforms, allowing you to rack up savings both on and off Amazon’s e-commerce platform. Ebates pays out your cash back every quarter either to your bank account or via Paypal.
Turn Your Spare Change Into An Amazon Gift Card – At No Cost!
Coinstar will charge you for turning your spare change into a more manageable form of cash. However, if you choose the company’s e-Gift card feature there is absolutely no charge for using the service!
If you have a giant pile of spare change sitting around why not turn it into an Amazon gift card without paying Coinstar a cut for simply separating your spare pennies, nickles, dimes, and quarters? You can turn anything from $5 to $1,000 into an Amazon gift card using a Coinstar machine.
Try Out The Prime Rewards Credit Card From Chase Bank
The Amazon Store credit card will give you 5% back on Amazon products but what about those times when you want more? The Amazon Prime Rewards credit card from Chase Bank will reward you with 5% back on your Amazon purchases along with 1% to 3% back on other daily purchases.
As an added bonus, new product categories are added to the 5% cash back offer on your Prime Rewards card every quarter. Just remember, pay off the card in full to avoid costly monthly interest payments.
Store Your Digital Photos For Free!
Why pay Dropbox or some other provider hundreds of dollars to store your family and other photos when Amazon does this for free!? That’s right, with Amazon Prime you receive access to unlimited photo storage for all your photography needs!
You can also store 5GB of video files but that fills up quickly so we stick with photos for this free service. As an added bonus, Amazon Photos offers desktop and mobile app so you can sync your photos in real-time while never losing a precious moment.
Comparison Shop With The Amazon App
I never walk into a store and purchase items without checking out their cost on Amazon. I find that it can be a total coin flip but I often save money by scanning a product’s barcode and finding it for cheaper on Amazon.
The Amazon app even allows you to just point your camera at a product and it will recognize the item without scanning the barcode. If you don’t need the item right away, have Amazon ship it. Many stores will also price match Amazon. For example, Best Buy will price match any product sold directly by Amazon but not through Amazon’s third-party sellers.