I LOVE AMAZON. Most people turn to Amazon for books, video games, music and maybe electronics. However, if it’s made, it’s probably on Amazon. In fact, you might be able score a better deal on toilet paper than you can in the store or even buy your favorite breakfast cereal at a lower price. But how do you get the absolute best deal and stretch your dollars? I present to you my favorite 11 Amazing Amazon Money Saving Hacks!
Did you know that the Amazon site features a large number of coupons? Always begin your shopping experience by scanning the most popular coupons. Deal bloggers often feature the best deals that utilize these coupons and it pops them to the top of the list. You can bet that there’s a reason why they’ve earned that ranking.
2. Subscribe & Save
While the program has changed a bit over the years, Amazon’s Subscribe and Save feature offers customers a reduced rate to stock up on their favorite products. I personally use Subscribe and Save to purchase all of our paper towels, toilet paper, Kleenex, deodorant, face soap, vitamins, and more. Basically, you “subscribe” to a product and it’s delivered on a routine basis (every month, every six months, etc.). You save 5% off the price up to 5 items and then at 5 items, your discount jumps to 15%. When at all possible, pair your deals with a coupon (the Subscribe & Save home page has them rounded up for you, wahoo!). Here’s the tricky part and where you need to be intentional: the prices fluctuate. So you can’t count on them always being the same every month. For this reason after your order ships, I encourage you to manage your Subscribe & Save account so that it doesn’t automatically ship the next time. Amazon will send you an e-mail right before your items are about to ship so you can alter your order then, too. Shipping is free with this program, too.
Want to learn more about saving more money on Subscribe and Save? Read How to Score the Best Subscribe and Save Deals.
3. FREE Kindle eBooks
Most people don’t realize that you don’t need a Kindle to read Kindle books. In fact, if you have almost any smart phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer you can access Amazon’s digital library. Even better, you can access thousands of books that are absolutely FREE. Simply download the FREE Kindle App. You can begin by scanning the Top 100 FREE Kindle Books. A number of books in the public domain – think classics like Dickens – are available for free. There are also Daily Deals for Kindle as well as Monthly Deals. Plus you’ll want to check out the Countdown Deals, too. You’ll search more effectively by looking in categories that you most frequently read.
4. Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime continues to add more and more features. Once only known for its 2 Day shipping, the service now contains a video streaming service (like Netflix) and a commercial free music streaming service (like Spotify). You can also access even more free Kindle books through the Kindle unlimited service. We finally bit the bullet just this year (when it went on sale for $79) and I haven’t been disappointed at all. In fact, I think many times without Amazon Prime, I overspent to get to the $35 Free Shipping threshold. You can share your Amazon Prime account among four household family members. And it also includes free photo storage (think like DropBox). The cost is $99 for a year but you can qualify for a free 30 Day Trial approximately every 13 months. I’d advise using it during the holiday season.
5. Shop Fresh Thyme on Amazon Prime Now
In the last year or two, Amazon has added a Prime Now program for select areas. Prime Now has a limited selection of Amazon stock and delivers in a day (as little as two hours) for no additional shipping charges with a minimum purchase. Even more recently, Prime Now has patterned with Fresh Thyme grocery stores allowing you to order your fresh produce, meats, and more and have it delivered within the day. Many of Fresh Thyme‘s low prices remain the same for this service. Prime Now automatically tips at $5 but you can add more or less. I’ve found this to be a great way to order what we need when I can’t get out to the store or I’m running low on time. Again, a minimum purchase is required.
6. Amazon Outlet
Did you know you could go outlet shopping without ever leaving the comfort of your couch? Amazon has an enormous outlet where you can check out deals on a wide variety of products. I LOVE checking through the Outlet deals at Christmas time for the best toy and game sales. Here’s a hint on how to best navigate what can be an overwhelming process (because after Amazon can turn into a 15 hour rabbit hole if you’re not careful): use the filters to sort items by size, color, brand, character, shipping method, and even price. Then toggle to arrange items from lowest price to highest price so that you don’t find something out of your price and range and get fixated on it.
7. Amazon Student
Are you a college student? Amazon offers a FREE Prime styled program just for you called Amazon Student. The trial lasts six months. If you want to continue, you’ll be charged $50 for the remaining six months of the year. Don’t forget to select that you don’t want to continue to prevent being charged automatically. You’ll also be eligible for special deals and promotions marketed directly toward college students.
So this is a third party site that is AMAZING. You head to CamelCamelCamel and either search the specific product or use the direct Amazon URL and it will allow you to see the history of pricing on that product. The site evaluates whether or not the current price is a good deal based on its history and you can even set alerts to track a price drop.
I love the Internet search engine Swagbucks. You conduct your routine searches on it and then are sporadically rewarded for your searches with “Swagbucks.” The best thing you can cash Swagbucks in for is you guessed – Amazon Gift Cards. There are numerous other ways to earn Swagbucks, from referring your friends, to taking surveys, to using their site as a shopping portal and more. It only takes 500 Swagbucks to snag a $5 Amazon gift card and if you use the site regularly, you should be able to do that in a short period of time. Once every month, you can also get a $25 Amazon gift card for only 2,200 Swagbucks (regularly 2500).
10. Amazon Family
Similar to Subscribe and Save, Amazon Family gives parents of newborns through the toddler years deep discounts on everyday items, including 20% off diapers. You also receive free 2 day shipping and all of the other advantages of Amazon Prime. You can get a 30 Day free trial of Amazon Family. If you like the service, you’ll need to subscribe to Amazon Prime to continue. Once you’ve signed up for the free trial, be sure to manage your account so that it does not automatically charge you the Prime Membership at the end of the trial period.
Each and every day, Amazon features at least one special deal as a part of their Gold Box Deals. While you can’t predict or see of a schedule of what the deals will be, you can sign up for an e-mail notification which appears in your inbox each morning and tells you what’s on sale that day.
Once again, your best bet when navigating Amazon is to toggle the filters and drill down the specific product you are looking for. Oftentimes, I’ll set filters to see only products that are 75% or more off or in a specific dollar amount range, too – always viewing at items from the lowest to highest price.
My book is now available: Slaying the Debt Dragon: How One Family Conquered Their Money Monster and Found an Inspired Happily Ever After. You can also check out The Debt Free Devotional on Kindle.
This post contains an affiliate link. That means when you get a great deal or maybe even something for free, you also help our family pay off our mortgage early. And for that, we royally thank you!