12 Amazon Shopping Tips That Will Save You Money
By Lauren Dana
The best ways to save money on Amazon don't always involve the big blowout sales you see advertised throughout the year. There are plenty of lesser-known discount pages and programs on the site that will help you get the best price on everything in your cart. Ultimately, these Amazon tips can save you money, time, and effort (or all of the above) so you can keep blowing your bank account on all the essentials—you know, like two-player board games, at-home saunas, and fuzzy throw blankets. Read on for the easiest ways to save money on Amazon.
1. Browse Amazon’s Outlet Store.
Amazon has a (somewhat) secret outlet section, which offers thousands upon thousands of discounted overstock items—some as cheap as $10. Choose from dozens of categories ranging from electronics (think portable chargers and phone cases) to pet supplies, beauty products, and even overstock items.
2. Use Amazon's Coupon Page.
The online shopping giant is chock-full of coupons for you to take advantage of, too. Like the outlet page, deals under the coupon page are broken down into categories that will help you save big on essentials as well as a few luxuries you've had your eye on.
3. Visit Amazon's Warehouse Section.
You don’t need to wait until Prime Day or Cyber Monday to score great deals across Amazon. Thanks to the site’s warehouse section, customers can get incredible (and often expensive) products like flat-screen TVs, coffee makers, and iPads at steep discounts. Products from Amazon Warehouse were either pre-owned or returned, and they're all inspected and certified before resale.
4. Go for Amazon Basics instead of name-brand products.
If you’re a frequent Amazon shopper, you’ve likely come across (or perhaps even purchased) Amazon Basics products at least once. The generic Amazon-owned brand offers over 1500 products, several of which have become fan favorites. Just take a look at the thousands of positive reviews for this microfiber sheet set, a cast-iron Dutch oven that rivals Le Creuset’s best-selling version, or a 4.6-star-rated pet bed. Check out the online storefront for even more shoppable items from this brand.
5. Sign Up For Amazon Prime.
While Amazon Prime isn’t free, the service comes with a ton of perks, including two-day shipping, Amazon Originals programming and more, PC games, and exclusive deals and discounts. Prime Members can also score unlimited access to thousands of ebooks, photo storage, and music. Even better? You can sign up for a 30-day free trial to test it out.
6. Browse The Daily Deals.
Every day, Amazon refreshes its Daily Deals page (a.k.a. the Goldbox Deals), where you’ll find discounts on all types of items. Whether you're shopping for some basic vitamins or browsing for a new high-end laptop, you'll likely find a way to save some extra cash.
7. Take advantage of Subscribe and Save.
Stock up on essentials by taking advantage of Amazon’s Subscribe and Save feature, which can help you save up to 15 percent on household staples—all while assuring that you’ll never run out of the things you need. This feature is available across hundreds of products like paper towels, deodorant, dog food, and more. All you have to do is set up automatic deliveries based on your needs (once a month for laundry detergent, for example), and the savings will be applied to each shipment.
8. Reload Gift Cards or Sign Up For An Amazon Prime Credit Card.
Get paid to shop (well, not technically, but you get the point) by either reloading an old Amazon gift card (up to 2 percent cash back on purchases) or signing up for an Amazon Rewards Signature Credit Card (up to 5 percent cash back on purchases). If you choose the latter option, know that there are two cards to choose from: a Visa card and a Store Card. While both cards offer up to 5 percent cash back when shopping on Amazon, the Visa card offers additional perks like 2 percent cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores—plus 1 percent back on all other purchases.
9. Select No-Rush Shipping.
Not only is this service free, but shoppers can earn $1 digital rewards each time they select no-rush shipping. Once your order ships, Amazon will automatically apply your digital reward, which you can use on almost anything. While the $1 may not sound like a lot, it adds up quickly if you’re a frequent online shopper.
10. Use Amazon’s Locker Service.
Amazon’s self-service kiosk—known as Amazon Locker—offers customers a safe and secure place to store and pick up their packages. To use this service, simply shop as usual and select a locker location near you at checkout. When your items are delivered, you’ll receive a pickup code that lets you unlock the locker and grab your stuff. You can even return items to these lockers without needing to print labels or schlep to UPS.
11. Compare Prices Using Amazon Assistant.
This handy Amazon Assistant Google Chrome extension lets you shop and compare item prices to help you find (and ultimately score!) the best possible deal. It also offers a 30-day price tracker feature that lets you see how often a particular product goes on sale. You can use the tool to discover new deals, create wishlists, and track order updates.
12. Save On Textbooks By Buying/Renting From Amazon.
The Amazon Textbooks Store saves you hard-earned cash on both new and used textbooks (up to 90 percent, to be exact). You also have the option to rent textbooks for up to 80 percent off. Digital textbooks are also available for up to 60 percent off. There’s even an option to create a Prime Student account (assuming you’re eligible), which offers free two-day shipping and a complimentary six-month trial.
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This article originally ran in 2021; it has been updated for 2022.