Tuesday Tip: Save Big Money When You Shop at Amazon
By Yehudit Garmaise
While few shoppers object to the convenience, selections, and customer service Amazon provides, the online superstore cannot be counted on to always provide the best prices.
Before buying on Amazon, quickly Google your desired items to quickly compare prices with other sites. While some products, such as those sold at Target and drugstores, are often cheaper on Amazon, for other products, savvy customers might find better deals checking out the same items at other online stores.
Sign up for an Amazon Business account, which is free if you buy Amazon products for your business. The Business account provides perks, such as exclusive discounts, that Prime accounts don’t provide, says Kim Komando, an expert in consumer technology. Business accounts provide customers with multiple payment options, business-only pricing, and quantity discounts.
Plus, Business accounts provide free shipping, access to Prime Day deals, Lightning Deals, and Prime Early Access. In addition, Business accounts allow customers to sell products and services to other businesses.
Amazon Prime, which cost $139 per year, offers more than its two-day or faster shipping for those who often shop on Amazon for personal goods. Prime’s other perks include Amazon music streaming, Amazon photo storage, Kindle book options, and free kids’ games and videos. Students who have emails that end with .edu can buy Prime for $69 per year. In addition, only Prime members can take part in the site’s annual sale events called Prime Days, which Tomsguide.com predicts will take place July 11 and 12.
Amazon promo codes on Tomsguide.com and other sites also can provide shopping with big savings.
Amazon also sometimes offers coupons on which customers need only click to redeem. Make sure to check all potential savings to guarantee you’ve gotten the best possible prices before submitting your orders.
Lightning Deals, unlike Prime Days, are frequently provided by Amazon to sell limited stocks of products or to sell products within limited amounts of time.
“For example, a smart speaker could be on sale for 75% off for the next three hours, or until it sells out,” writes Komando, who added that consumers can find Lightning deals throughout Amazon or on the site’s page that features “Today’s Deals.” “If you see a deal you like, grab it before it’s gone.”
If you are shopping for something in particular, you can browse upcoming deals and add yourself to waitlists to receive alerts when deals are active.
Choose no-rush delivery when you can wait a bit longer for your orders. By selecting later shipping dates, Amazon customers can receive credit toward future orders.
While Amazon Prime Rewards credit cards can provide 5% cash back on Amazon and Whole Foods Market purchases, 2% back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores, and 1% back on all purchases, having an Amazon credit card may encourage many buyers to rack up big online bills each month. Unless credit card users do not spend money they don’t have and also pay their bills off every month on time, financial advisors do not recommend buying with credit.
Boro Park’s Chaim Geller, who created helpmebuildcredit.com, says that when deciding whether to sign up for credit cards, customers should ask themselves the following question.
“If you have ever paid interest because you found yourself with a credit card bill that you could not afford, then credit cards are not for you,” said Geller, who explained that otherwise, people are just borrowing and spending money they don’t have.
Amazon Warehouse features good prices on items, such as appliances, power tools, cameras, school supplies, and electronics that were returned or slightly used.
Amazon Outlet doesn’t sell popular higher-end brands like Apple and Sony, but the link provides closeout, clearance, and overstock items for prices that Komando called, “ridiculously cheap.”