More consumers turn to Amazon to do their online shopping than anywhere else. According to a report by eMarketer, a market research company, Amazon’s share of e-commerce sales in the U.S. was expected to be a colossal 43.5% in 2017. EBay’s sales were the next highest with a share of 6.8%.
If you spend a lot of money shopping on Amazon every year, you might be missing out on opportunities to save. To help you maximize your savings potential, we’ve put together a list of nine savings hacks you can use when shopping on the website.
9 Amazon savings hacks you can use every day
Amazon is already a low-cost leader in online shopping, but using these nine hacks can help you squeeze even more savings out of your everyday purchases.
1. Use the warehouse
Amazon Warehouse is like a massive online clearance rack with many of the same items you can get on the main website. Here you’ll find a flurry of close-out sales, open-box discounts, and marked-down refurbished products.
“There’s a bad connotation with refurbished,” said Tracie Fobes, a personal finance expert and blogger for Penny Pinchin’ Mom. But she believes there shouldn’t be.
“Refurbished means an electronic has to go through a rigorous process to be checked before it can be sold,” she said. “It’s cleaned and everything is checked to make sure it works properly.” In some cases, you might even get a warranty.
2. Check the price history
One way Amazon encourages shoppers to buy now is by showing you a retail price and a discounted price. For example, here’s a smart TV that’s listed at $599.99 but offers a $200 discount with a final price of $399.99. Why wouldn’t you jump on that?
But if you visit Camelcamelcamel, a price-tracking website, you can see that the TV hasn’t been listed at $599.99 since it first debuted on the site almost a year ago. What’s more, the price has recently been as low as $369.99.
In this scenario, it’s likely that the price will drop again. So if you can wait to replace your current TV, you could save an extra $30.
3. Take the bribe to delay shipping
If you’re a Prime member, you automatically get free two-day shipping. But to save costs, Amazon offers incentives to delay your shipping a few days. In the past, I’ve been offered free shipping on Amazon Prime Pantry orders and a $1 credit for digital purchases and e-books.
It’s not a lot of savings, but if you don’t need your shipment until the no-rush delivery date, it’s still nice. I’ve gotten several 99-cent video rentals and Kindle books with no-rush shipping credits.
4. Abandon your shopping cart
If you’ve ever left something in your Amazon shopping cart, you might have received an email a week or two later reminding you that you never completed your purchase. If you wait a little longer, you might be offered a discount if it’s a third-party seller.
“It doesn’t often happen on Amazon, but there are rare instances where they want you to buy, so they’ll throw a discount your way,” said Fobes. “It’s always worth a try if you don’t need something right away.”
5. Flag late shipments
If you’re a Prime member, your two-day shipping benefit is guaranteed. If you ever get a shipment late, report it to Amazon. You might receive some form of compensation, such as a partial refund, a credit for future purchases, or a complimentary one-month extension of your Amazon Prime membership.
To automate the process, consider using the Paribus app. Once you connect your Amazon account, Paribus will track your shipments and automatically contact Amazon if one comes late. The app also tracks your Walmart.com purchases if you paid for guaranteed shipping.
6. Use all your Prime benefits
Arguably the biggest benefit you get from Amazon Prime is the free-shipping feature, especially if you shop a lot. But it’s far from the only valuable perk you get with membership.
“So many people look at the shipping, but Amazon Prime is so much more than that,” said Fobes. “You have photo storage, video, music, you can get early access to lightning deals. There are just so many perks that the $119 [annual] fee just goes far beyond the free shipping.”
For example, you don’t need to pay for photo storage if you can get it with Amazon for free. Also, you can get access to free books, magazines, and audiobooks with Prime Reading. Take some time to explore the perks you get with your Amazon Prime membership, and consider how they can save you in other ways than shopping.
7. Get the Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card
It’s usually best to stay away from store credit cards, but the Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card is a rare exception. The card offers:
- 3% cash back on Amazon purchases
- 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores
- 1% cash back everywhere else
You can use your cash back as a credit on future purchases. Avoid this option, however, if you have issues with overspending.
“You have to have the money in your bank account at the time you use the card,” said Fobes. “Don’t think you can just pay it back when you get your paycheck. Your paycheck is never a guarantee, and you don’t want to accrue interest.”
8. Trade in your used stuff
If you have any used items that you no longer want or need, consider trading them in for Amazon gift cards. Amazon will even search your order history for eligible items and let you know what you might get if you trade in.
A few things to consider before you try to trade something in, though:
- The item must function perfectly.
- There can’t be any cracks or major scratches or other blemishes.
- You can’t trade it in if it’s not listed on the trade-in page.
To make sure you get the best return, however, compare the price Amazon offers with other ways to sell stuff online.
9. Go wild with coupons
The Amazon coupon page offers deals in most of its categories. You can filter by popularity, expiration date, and discount percentage, or you can search for a specific brand. While this might take a few extra minutes, you can save a lot over time if you make it a practice to check the page every time you shop.
Avoid getting carried away
Saving money when you’re shopping online can be exciting, but it can get out of hand if you allow it to. If you end up buying something that you don’t need because you got it at a discount, you still spent more than you would have if you hadn’t been offered the discount.
As you explore these savings hacks, focus on using them only on purchases you would have made with or without the savings opportunity. And if you use a credit card, make sure to pay off your balance in full each month. By doing these things, you’ll not only save money, but you’ll also avoid spending money unnecessarily.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2020!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|1.99% – 6.65%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.99% – 7.10%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.99% – 6.44%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.39% – 6.01%||Undergrad |
|1.99% – 6.43%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|3.19% – 6.08%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. Mortgage lending is not offered in Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association.
ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE (“APR”)
There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties associated with the loan. Lender may assess a late fee if any part of a payment is not received within 15 days of the payment due date. Any late fee assessed shall not exceed 5% of the late payment or $28, whichever is less. A borrower may be charged $20 for any payment (including a check or an electronic payment) that is returned unpaid due to non-sufficient funds (NSF) or a closed account.
For bachelor’s degrees and higher, up to 100% of outstanding private and federal student loans (minimum $5,000) are eligible for refinancing. If you are refinancing greater than $300,000 in student loan debt, Lender may refinance the loans into 2 or more new loans.
ELIGIBILITY & ELIGIBLE LOANS
Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).
Graduates may refinance any unsubsidized or subsidized Federal or private student loan that was used exclusively for qualified higher education expenses (as defined in 26 USC Section 221) at an accredited U.S. undergraduate or graduate school. Any federal loans refinanced with Lender are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment.
All loans must be in grace or repayment status and cannot be in default. Borrower must have graduated or be enrolled in good standing in the final term preceding graduation from an accredited Title IV U.S. school and must be employed, or have an eligible offer of employment. Parents looking to refinance loans taken out on behalf of a child should refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for applicable terms and conditions.
For Associates Degrees: Only associates degrees earned in one of the following are eligible for refinancing: Cardiovascular Technologist (CVT); Dental Hygiene; Diagnostic Medical Sonography; EMT/Paramedics; Nuclear Technician; Nursing; Occupational Therapy Assistant; Pharmacy Technician; Physical Therapy Assistant; Radiation Therapy; Radiologic/MRI Technologist; Respiratory Therapy; or Surgical Technologist. To refinance an Associates degree, a borrower must also either be currently enrolled and in the final term of an associate degree program at a Title IV eligible school with an offer of employment in the same field in which they will receive an eligible associate degree OR have graduated from a school that is Title IV eligible with an eligible associate and have been employed, for a minimum of 12 months, in the same field of study of the associate degree earned.
The interest rate you are offered will depend on your credit profile, income, and total debt payments as well as your choice of fixed or variable and choice of term. For applicants who are currently medical or dental residents, your rate offer may also vary depending on whether you have secured employment for after residency.
The repayment of any refinanced student loan will commence (1) immediately after disbursement by us, or (2) after any grace or in-school deferment period, existing prior to refinancing and/or consolidation with us, has expired.
POSTPONING OR REDUCING PAYMENTS
After loan disbursement, if a borrower documents a qualifying economic hardship, we may agree in our discretion to allow for full or partial forbearance of payments for one or more 3-month time periods (not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan), provided that we receive acceptable documentation (including updating documentation) of the nature and expected duration of the borrower’s economic hardship.
We may agree under certain circumstances to allow a borrower to make $100/month payments for a period of time immediately after loan disbursement if the borrower is employed full-time as an intern, resident, or similar postgraduate trainee at the time of loan disbursement. These payments may not be enough to cover all of the interest that accrues on the loan. Unpaid accrued interest will be added to your loan and monthly payments of principal and interest will begin when the post-graduate training program ends.
We may agree under certain circumstances to allow postponement (deferral) of monthly payments of principal and interest for a period of time immediately following loan disbursement (not to exceed 6 months after the borrower’s graduation with an eligible degree), if the borrower is an eligible student in the borrower’s final term at the time of loan disbursement or graduated less than 6 months before loan disbursement, and has accepted an offer of (or has already begun) full-time employment.
If Lender agrees (in its sole discretion) to postpone or reduce any monthly payment(s) for a period of time, interest on the loan will continue to accrue for each day principal is owed. Although the borrower might not be required to make payments during such a period, the borrower may continue to make payments during such a period. Making payments, or paying some of the interest, will reduce the total amount that will be required to be paid over the life of the loan. Interest not paid during any period when Lender has agreed to postpone or reduce any monthly payment will be added to the principal balance through capitalization (compounding) at the end of such a period, one month before the borrower is required to resume making regular monthly payments.
KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
This information is current as of June 23, 2020 and is subject to change.
2 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.
Splash Financial Disclosures
Splash Financial loans are available through arrangements with lending partners. Your loan application will be submitted to the lending partner and be evaluated at their sole discretion. For loans where a credit union is the lender, or a purchaser of the loan, in order to refinance your loans, you will need to become a credit union member.
The Splash Student Loan Refinance Program is not offered or endorsed by any college or university. Neither Splash Financial nor the lending partner are affiliated with or endorse any college or university listed on this website.
You should review the benefits of your federal student loan; it may offer specific benefits that a private refinance/consolidation loan may not offer. If you work in the public sector, are in the military or taking advantage of a federal department of relief program, such as income based repayment or public service forgiveness, you may not want to refinance, as these benefits do not transfer to private refinance/consolidation loans.
Splash Financial and our lending partners reserve the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen and meet our lending partner’s underwriting requirements. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. This information is current as of May 1, 2020.
Fixed APR: Annual Percentage Rate [APR] is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Fixed Rate options range from 2.88% (without autopay) to 7.27% (without autopay) and will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. Rates are subject to change without notice. Fixed rate options without an autopay discount consist of a range from 2.88% per year to 6.21% per year for a 5-year term, 3.40% per year to 6.25% per year for a 7-year term, 3.45% to 5.08% for a 8-year term, 3.89% per year to 6.65% per year for a 10-year term, 4.18% per year to 5.11% per year for a 12-year term, 4.20% per year to 7.05% per year for a 15-year term, or 4.51% per year to 7.27% per year for a 20-year term, with no origination fees. The fixed interest rate will apply until the loan is paid in full (whether before or after default, and whether before or after the scheduled maturity date of the loan).
Variable APR: Annual Percentage Rate [APR] is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Variable rate options range from 1.99% (with autopay) to 7.10% (without autopay) and will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. Our lowest rate option is shown with a 0.25% autopay discount. Our highest rate option does not include an autopay discount. The variable rates are based on the Variable rate index, is based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of April 27, 2020, the one-month LIBOR rate is 0.43763%. The interest rate on a variable rate loan is comprised of an index and margin added together. The margin is a fixed amount (disclosed at the time of your loan application) added each month to the index to determine the next month’s variable rate. Variable rate options without an autopay discount consist of a range from 2.01% per year to 6.30% per year for a 5-year term, 4.00% per year to 6.35% per year for a 7-year term, 2.09% per year to 3.92% per year for a 8-year term, 4.25% per year to 6.40% per year for a 10-year term, 2.67% per year to 4.56% per year for a 12-year term, 3.44% per year to 6.65% per year for a 15-year term, 4.75% per year to 6.93% per year for a 20-year term, or 5.14% per year to 7.10% for a 25-year term, with no origination fees. APR is subject to increase after consummation. Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the borrower’s loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. The maximum variable rate may be between 9.00% and 16.00%, depending on loan term. The floor rate may be between 0.54% and 4.21%, depending on loan term. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.
3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
4 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.19% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.43% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 1.99% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.43% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of June 15, 2020, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 6/15/2020. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at [email protected], or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
© 2020 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 0.2% effective May 10, 2020.