Amazon consistently has the lowest prices on most pet supplies. What some dog owners don’t know is that there are added ways to save when you shop for dog supplies from this retailer. Some of these money saving tips are free, while others may cost you a bit upfront but save you hundreds in the long run.
Like other online retailers, Amazon.com offers tons of deals, but remember that some of them will be the “you-get-what-you-pay-for” situation. While the cost is cheaper, the quality may be as well. With that in mind, we've picked out 24 most cost-saving tips that are actually useful for pet owners on a budget.
1. Get Amazon Prime
It's essential to mention Amazon Prime Membership. Not only does Amazon Prime offer you free one- and two-day shipping options, but Prime members also have access to Prime-only prices and Prime-only deals on certain dog supplies, they get Prime Cards with 2-5% cashback for every purchase, among other benefits.
2. Use a Free Trial for Amazon Prime
If you're not sure yet, simply sign up for a FREE 30-day trial of Amazon Prime and cancel before it renews and bills you for a paid membership. Amazon reps have confirmed that you can have as many free trials of Amazon Prime as you have e-mail addresses.
Effectively, this means that you can sign up for a free trial every month using free e-mail providers. This can get hard to keep track of, however, and may become confusing after a while. If you do use this method of Amazon Prime membership, make sure that you cancel EACH of your memberships after you sign up.
3. Open Box or Used Items in Amazon Warehouse
Depending on what you are shopping for, you can often find great deals by buying an open box or used items in Amazon Warehouse. I wouldn’t recommend used bedding or similar items due to the risk of pests or parasites, but products like dog crates or pet gates can be sanitized, and they're generally the best deals at Amazon Warehouse.
4. Use “Subscribe and Save”
When you sign up for the subscribe and save service on Amazon, you sign up for regular delivery of your dog’s products. For example, you can sign up to have your dog’s food delivered every 30 days.
This automated shipping process saves you money in gas, saves you forgetting to buy more food for your dog, and it gives you a 5% discount on your pet products. If you have Prime membership, then you can save even more, up to 20% on pet products. Find out what pet products and dog supplies are available on Subscribe and Save here.
5. Subscribe to 5 Items or More Per Month
When you sign up to receive products monthly via Amazon's Subscribe and Save service, you save the standard 5%. Then, you can further increase your savings to 15% if you subscribe to 5 or more products per month.
Not all of them have to be dog supplies, so if you pair it with some essential household items, 15% in savings may be a good deal of money.
6. Check for a Deal of the Day
Amazon does not always have t he “Deal of the Day” offers in the pet supplies section, but once in a while, you may catch a good one. If you don't want to keep checking it daily, simply look at their Daily Deals Page whenever you're ready to purchase something from Amazon and see if you find a discounted item instead of paying full price.
7. Watch for Daily Lightning Deals in Pet Supplies
Every day, throughout the day, Amazon runs Lightening Deals Page that offer savings for just a couple of hours. These savings are applied to a variety of dog supplies. They're available to everybody, but Amazon Prime members get to see the deals 30 minutes before all other Amazon buyers.
8. Watch Your Amazon Deals
Amazon lightning deals are scheduled throughout the day and it’s easy to miss a deal if you forget to check in. Use Amazon Deal Watcher to track the deals that you are interested in. Simply sign up for the Amazon Deal Watcher and “watch” deals you are interested in, and you will receive a reminder before your picked deal(s) goes live.
9. Check Amazon Coupons
Amazon offers their own coupons on pet supplies, found on their Coupons Page. These can save you a percentage or a dollar amount on your purchases. Coupons are easy to apply by simply clicking the “Clip Coupon” button under each offer and adding the item to your cart.
10. Take Advantage of Early Access Pet Deals
Another benefit of Prime membership is the “Early Access” feature. Members get access to certain pet supplies deals on Amazon 30 minutes ahead of other buyers for most other offers, too.
This can be particularly advantageous for the biggest savings and most popular products which usually happen during their largest sales, such as “Prime Day”, “Black Friday”, “Cyber Monday”, “12 Days of Deals” (Christmas), and more.
11. Check Pet Supplies Savings and Sales in Gold Box
Amazon also offers savings and sales on pet supplies for varied lengths of time. Most often, these Gold Box sales are updated weekly. You can see here what dog products are currently on sale or being offered with savings.
12. Check the Amazon Outlet
The Amazon Outlet is another place where you can find discounts on various dog products and supplies. These are most often products that are being discontinued soon after, or no longer carried by Amazon, or that have been replaced with newer models.
13. Don’t Forget About Digital Deals
If you are in search of dog training books or DVDs, Amazon sometimes has pretty good sales and discounts in their Digital Deals Section. Digital deals are most often fictional books, but you will occasionally find digital pet products if you are patient enough to scroll through all of the deals.
14. Woot Deals are Amazon Deals too
Amazon has acquired the popular Woot.com website, and now you can find Woot Deals on the Amazon site, too. Woot does not offer a pets category specifically but frequently list pets supplies in their “Home and Kitchen” section. Woot dog supplies deals generally don’t include edible items, but will include dog beds, furniture, toys, pet mobility aids, bowls, and dog grooming items.
15. Check Alexa Deals for Amazon Echo Users
If you have Amazon Alexa (which can be useful for dog owners) or any other Amazon Echo device, you will have access to Alexa Deals. They are available in all categories of products, but don’t always include pet products, so it can be hit or miss.
To take advantage of Alexa Deals, you must use a voice command to ask Alexa to order the item for you. Only Prime members can take advantage of Alexa deals, and buyers are also limited to one item per deal per customer and per Alexa device.
16. Look for Multiple Item Discounts
If you are purchasing multiple items from one manufacturer or shop owner, check to see if they offer discounts on more than one item. Sometimes, you will get a discount if you buy more than one of one item from a shop. Other times, you will get a discount if you purchase multiple items of any kind from the same shop.
Calculate whether these savings are worth buying multiple items. For example, if you can save $2 by purchasing two large bags of dog food but it takes a month to get through one bag, it’s not worth purchasing two bags and letting one sit for four weeks.
17. Look Through All Item Listings
Once in a while, you will find the same item listed multiple times on Amazon. This is usually the result of other third party sellers making new listings for items that are already being sold by Amazon.com. This can also happen when multi-packs of items are listed. When searching for your item, scan through all listing for that item to make sure you get the best price.
18. Push a Promotion
Pushing a promotion doesn’t always work with Amazon but occasionally it will. Simply add the items you want to purchase to your Amazon cart and leave them there without checking out. When you let items sit in your cart for a few days, you sometimes receive an e-mail prompting you to check out. This email often includes a promotion or coupon code to save money.
19. Consider Substitute Items
Depending on your dog and the item you are looking for, don’t be afraid to check out substitute brands. Whether you look at competing brands of the same item or generic brands is up to you.
You will save more using generic brands for most items; however, generic items aren’t always best quality. For example, if you use baby wipes to clean your dog’s paws, generic wipes may be flimsier and require twice as many for the same job. You may find, though, that a competing brand offers the same quality for a lower price.
20. A Pre-Order Price Guarantee
On certain items that are offered for pre-order, Amazon displays a “Pre-Order Price Guarantee”. This means that if you purchase the item at one price and the price lowers before your item is in hand, you can request a refund for the difference in price. And if the cost increases later, you will only pay the original price instead.
Pet products are rarely offered on pre-order, but certain items like tech toys for dogs and unique dog gadgets can qualify for this type of savings.
21. Check Third Party Sellers
Depending on the items you are looking for, you may be able to find better prices from other third party sellers on Amazon. Do this by finding the item you want and clicking on it. Once the item page opens, scroll down the page and on the right side under the purchase button, you will see “Other Sellers”.
When searching through other third party sellers on Amazon, factor in shipping costs into the final price since not all sellers offer free shipping. Also, be sure to check the reputation score of the seller and only buy from sellers with a trustworthy reputation.
22. Look at Used Items from Other Sellers on Amazon
Moreover, when shopping with “Other Sellers” on Amazon, consider buying used items when it makes sense. You can find used items from other sellers by following the directions above and looking only for sellers offering used items. These used items will vary in condition, so it’s up to you what condition item you purchase but the better the condition, the higher the price will be.
23. Use a Price Tracking Service
Some items follow pricing trends depending on varying factors such as the time of year. You can follow pricing trends on Amazon products by using a price tracking service like Camel Camel Camel. This will tell you the best time of year or time of the month to purchase a particular dog product you are looking for to get the best price.
24. Use a Price Searching Service and Deals Sites
If you’re short on time or just not confident in your savings skills, use a price searching service and check sites that constantly publish the best deals on dog supplies from Amazon. They do all of the legwork for you when it comes to Amazon deals, something similar to what we do with Black Friday deals page.
…Just Know When to Stop Looking for Savings
There are plenty of ways to shop for dog supplies and save through Amazon, but it’s important to know when you are no longer shopping efficiently and only hunting deals for the sake of hunting them (and spending money needlessly).
I know personally that I can spend hours looking through discounted items for my dogs, but then I end up losing my savings on pet products because of the time I’ve wasted.
The bottom line? If you’re spending hours to save just a few cents, you’re costing yourself more in the long run. Just bite the bullet, buy the product and get on with your day.
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