When I detailed my process on How to Make Money on Amazon as a seller, I learned a lot about how Amazon works. While I was learning how to maximize revenue, on the flip side I also found all sorts of additional ways for buyers to save money on purchases!
Once you add in the new tricks to my old Amazon shopping habits and it’s a deal seekers paradise!
Here are tips and tricks to save money when you shop on Amazon this holiday season.
How to Save Money Shopping on Amazon
- Look Beyond the Buy Box. The buy box isn’t the lowest price! The “buy box” or the yellow box that says Add to cart, is usually how we purchase when we decide we want to buy an item. However, the box below that says More Buying Choices has other units, which are, sometimes lower priced. Various items rotate through the buy box and the item currently in the yellow box isn’t always the lowest price, although it’s usually within 2% of the lowest price. Click on the link with the number of new or used items and you can see all the price points. If you shop using Amazon Prime, you can limit it to just the Prime units and select the lowest price from those.
- Comparison Shopping. When shopping online the Amazon browser bar or Invisible Hand can show you the lowest price elsewhere. When you are viewing an item on Amazon, it will automatically show you if a different site has the item at a cheaper price.
- Amazon Price Matches. Amazon doesn’t price match on individual items. However, they do have the option about halfway down the page to “tell us about a lower price”. If you submit a lower price at a competitor, check back the next day. I have already seen Amazon match the lower prices multiple times this holiday season. It’s a good option when you want to buy from Amazon for the customer service, but want the same price you see elsewhere.
- Multiple Listings. There are often multiple listings for the same item in different categories… all with different prices. Once you decide you want an item, search again for item title or ASIN and open up the search to all departments.
- Opt for Slower Shipping. With Amazon Prime, we get two free day shipping. However, have you noticed the new option for slower shipping? The new “FREE No-Rush Delivery” will get you your item in 5-7 days, but you’ll also earn a free $3 for movies and tv. If you are shopping early, it’s an easy way to earn free Amazon Instant Video Credits.
- Track Prices. Once I identify a product I want, I review the price trend in Camelcamelcamel. You can also set price alerts and camelcamelcamel will email you once the price drops.
- Earning Cashback. Amazon finally started giving cashback on purchases via Ebates and Mr. Rebates. It’s not for all the categories, but at least it’s a start!
- Buying from a 3rd Party. I used to be a little wary of 3rd party options on Amazon. However, now I realize that buying from a 3rd party via FBA (Fulfilled by Amazon) still gets you the same customer service, the same fast shipping, and often times the same product from the warehouse. Many of the items are commingled at the warehouse anyways so you might as well opt for the lowest price. This applies to the FBA sellers, not the regular third party sellers. If you sort by Prime, you’ll see them.
- List prices. When you see the list price with a strikethrough, and a sale price, beware. Sellers can make up the list prices! Often times, they’re the real list price, but not always.
- Limited Stock. You know the feeling you get when you finally find the item you are looking for and you see the message “Only 2 left in stock”. Makes you want to buy it immediately right? Well, it’s not quite true! There can be more than that in stock, with different sellers (sometimes at the same price, sometimes at a different price). I’m guessing it’s a marketing trick to make you feel like you need to buy right now to make sure you get the item you want.
- Free Shipping. You can get free Amazon shipping this holiday season using a Amazon Free 1 Month Trial, a Free Amazon student account, or a Free Amazon parent account.
- 5% Cashback. You can earn 5% cashback shopping at Amazon this holiday season with your Discover More card or your Citi Forward Card.
- Stack Discover Promos. In addition to using your Discover More card for the 5% cashback on holiday shopping, you can also use the code DSCVRHSP for free One-Day Shipping when you buy with your Discover card.
- Lightning Deals. My favorite way to save? The Amazon Lightning Deals! The prices don’t get much better than that!
Do you have tips for shopping on Amazon?