25 ways to save money on Amazon

Amazon.com offers some of the best online deals on just about any item you can think of. However, there are opportunities for you to save even more money. We’ve rounded up a list of the best ways to save on your Amazon purchases. Sometimes, just a little extra effort can go a long way.

1. “Subscribe and Save” on your regular purchases.

Sign up for Amazon’s “Subscribe and Save” program to get discounts on thousands of everyday items, like toilet paper and snack foods. You can determine how often you want the items to be shipped (for free), and you can cancel at any time.

2. Sign up, then cancel your free trial of Amazon Prime.

Shoppers can sign up for one free month of Amazon Prime, which offers free two-day shipping and special discounts. You can take advantage of the freebies and offers before the trial runs out, and then cancel before the $99 annual fee is automatically charged to your card.

3. Get deals on kid and baby stuff with Amazon Mom.

The Amazon Mom program is free for Amazon Prime members and offers parents great deals on baby registry items and essentials such as diapers, wipes and other gear. Once you see how good 20 percent off your diaper order feels, you might never go back to a big box store.

4. Shop limited-time sales all year with Amazon Gold Box.

Gold Box deals are featured in the “Today’s Deals” link at the top of most Amazon pages. Customers must be logged in to see these deals, which include Deal of the Day, Our Best Deals and Lightning Deals.

5. Find instant discounts on Amazon’s Coupons page.

Amazon customers who are signed into their accounts can check out all the available coupons the site offers. Shoppers can find coupons on useful items, including diapers, cleaning supplies and grocery items. Simply click the “Clip Coupon” button, add the item to your cart, and the discount is automatically applied when you check out.

6. Shop on Amazon, and donate to your favorite charity.

With the AmazonSmile program, 0.5 percent of your purchase price is donated to the charitable organization of your choice. Simply visit smile.amazon.com, and shop for tens of millions of products that are eligible for donations. There are more than one million charities to choose from, so there’s sure to be a cause that will appeal to your heart.

7. Use deal tracker sites.

Prices for items on Amazon can go up and down, so sites like camelcamelcamel.com and thetracktor.com will email or tweet you when an item you want drops in price. These websites also offer the pricing history of most items to help you determine when is the right time to buy.

8. Get Amazon Prime for half the price with Amazon Student.

Starving students can sign up for a free six-month trial of Amazon Student, which offers many of the same benefits as Amazon Prime at half the cost. You’ll need a valid college email address to access Amazon Student, and you have the option to cancel the six-month trial before you get charged the $49 fee.

9. Buy from third-party sellers to avoid state sales tax.

Some third-party Amazon sellers don’t charge sales tax. You can tell which ones don’t charge by selecting the “new” or “used” tabs that pop up on an item page.

10. Shop Amazon through the Ebates portal.

Ebates is an online shopping site that offers coupon codes and cash-back rewards on your purchases. If you shop Amazon through the Ebates portal, you can get between 3 percent and 8 percent back on your purchases, depending on what you buy.

11. Get a price-match refund on a TV or phone.

If you purchased a TV or phone on Amazon but noticed another retailer sells the same item at a lower price, contact Amazon within 14 days of shipping for a price-match refund. Amazon has a price-matching policy for TVs and phones, and promises to refund the difference between the price you paid and the price you saw at a competitor.

12. Use a price comparison browser plugin.

Amazon doesn’t always offer the lowest prices – sometimes items can be listed for twice the retail price. Install a price-checking plugin, like InvisibleHand or PriceBlink, to instantly check prices at other retailers and find a better deal.

13. Keep items in your shopping cart for a day or two.

In some cases, Amazon will email you a promotion for items left in your shopping cart for a day or two. This is not 100 percent guaranteed, but it’s worth a try.

14. Turn your loose change into Amazon credit.

Coinstar normally charges fees to exchange loose change for bills, but if you request an Amazon gift card instead of cash, the company will waive the charge. The gift cards are issued in amounts ranging from $5 to $1,000 and can instantly be used online.

15. Choose slower shipping, and get shopping credits.

Amazon Prime members who choose free no-rush shipping instead of free two-day shipping receive complimentary promotional credits that can be used toward future purchases on Amazon. Once the item ships, you will receive an email with details of the promotional credit, including how to redeem it.

16. Check the Amazon Outlet for deep discounts on new items.

Just like a traditional outlet store, Amazon Outlet offers deep discounts on new items – some items are marked down by 30 percent or more.

17. Trade in your old stuff.

Amazon offers gift cards to customers who trade in certain items such as tablets, phones, DVDs, CDs, textbooks and video games. You won’t get actual cash in-hand, but considering you can buy pretty much anything on Amazon, a gift card is the next best thing.

18. Ask for a rebate if your purchase price drops within seven days.

If the price of an item drops after you purchase it, Amazon will refund the price difference if the customer contacts the company within seven calendar days of the delivery date. This policy only applies to items sold and shipped by Amazon, not third-party sellers.

19. Use MyHabit to purchase designer goods.

MyHabit is a site created by Amazon just for fashion and lifestyle designer goods. The site hosts daily events that start at 9 a.m. and last for 72 hours. Members can score up to 60 percent off designer brands for men, women, children and more.

20. Pre-order items to qualify for discounted add-on items.

Amazon sells tons of everyday “add-on” items, including toilet paper, vitamins and toiletries. The only issue is that you have to spend a total of $25 in order to get these deals. However, if you pre-order an item, like an unreleased DVD or video game, you can meet the minimum order price and qualify for the add-ons.

21. Refund a bad item without having to return it.

If you receive a broken item that was purchased through Amazon, contact customer service right away. In most cases, you can receive a full refund, or the company will ship you a new item without requiring you to return the defective item first. Items sold by Amazon are usually shipped the next day, and third-party items are refunded in two to three business days.

22. Get daily discounts on Kindle books and free Android apps.

Amazon features new discounts on Kindle books every day of the week. The site also offers a free paid Android app each day if you install the Amazon App Store.

23. Buy cheap textbooks from Amazon websites in other countries.

Amazon websites in other countries might sell the international edition of a pricey college textbook you need for school. These editions are usually in English, but sometimes there are slight differences in the page numbers or chapter questions.

24. Share your Amazon Prime account.

Amazon Prime members love the free two-day shipping other Amazon customers can’t take advantage of. You can share the love with up to four other family members by visiting the “Prime Central” page and inviting household members to share your account.

25. Shop Amazon Warehouse deals.

Amazon Warehouse is Amazon’s store for returned items and boxes that have already been opened. It usually features items that have been returned under the company’s loose return policy. Items are sorted by conditions, so you’ll know if the item you purchased is “Like New” or just “Acceptable.” You won’t be covered by any original warranties, but Amazon still offers protection on purchases up to $2,500 plus shipping.

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