While a Prime membership is the single best way to get the most out of Amazon, the retailer’s website offers plenty of features for everyone.
They can be overlooked easily, but these hidden features can save you money, streamline shopping and even help eliminate clutter.
Keep reading for lesser-known tactics for getting more out of Amazon.
1. Use a price tracker
Honey, a browser extension, and CamelCamelCamel, a website and extension, are free tools that offer Amazon price tracking.
That means you can use one of these tools to find out how the price of a particular product on Amazon has changed over time, and to keep tabs on its price going forward. This helps you get a better deal.
Learn more: We explain more in “7 Free Tools for Saving More Money at Amazon,” or you can head straight to Honey’s website or CamelCamelCamel.com.
2. Get stuff for free
Who doesn’t love free stuff? You can get plenty of it on Amazon, regardless of whether you have a Prime membership.
Freebies range from e-books to valuable home goods that you could receive by registering for wedding gifts from companies such as All-Clad, Mikasa and Kenmore.
Learn more: See our article “10 Things That Really Are Free on Amazon” for details on these and other freebies offered through the site.
3. Shop the secret departments
Amazon is already known for its bargain prices on many goods, but there are additional savings to be found if you know where to look.
Visit the “Bargain Finds” page for low-priced goodies of all kinds. Or hit the Outlet to find discounted overstock items. You can also visit the Renewed section for refurbished electronics.
Learn more: More on these and other secret departments can be found in our story “7 Secret Departments of Amazon You Should Know About.”
4. Trade your clutter for gift cards
Minimalists might bemoan Amazon as a way to quickly fill up your house with unnecessary purchases, but the retail giant also can help you cut your clutter.
The Amazon Trade-In program lets customers send in unwanted electronics, books and more. In return, they receive an Amazon gift card.
Learn more: Visit the Amazon Trade-In program page, where you can also see how much credit you could get for a particular piece of clutter that’s sitting around your home. Click on a product category to get started.
And for more tips like this, check out “5 Ways You Can Score Free Amazon Gift Cards.”
5. Check for coupons
Yes, Amazon has coupons — lots of them. No scissors necessary: You can “clip” these digital coupons with the tap of a button, either on a product’s webpage or Amazon’s coupons page.
Learn more: Visit the “Amazon Coupons” webpage to view all coupons that are currently available.
6. Buy exclusive generic brands
It’s well-known that generics can cost significantly less than their brand-name counterparts, but did you know that Amazon has its own generic brands as well?
They go by names like AmazonBasics and Amazon Elements, and some products from these brands are among the site’s bestsellers.
Learn more: Visit Amazon’s “Explore Our Brands” page to get a quick sense of the array of brands and products.
7. Subscribe and save
Put your shopping on auto-pilot using Amazon’s Subscribe & Save feature. A wide variety of products are eligible for Subscribe & Save orders — from toothpaste and diapers to dog food.
You select the items and the frequency of the shipments. Amazon will not only send the items to you automatically at the frequency of your choice, but it also will ship them for free.
What’s more, you’ll see extra savings of 5% or, if you subscribe to five or more items, up to 15%.
Learn more: Visit Amazon’s “Subscribe & Save” page.
8. Return purchases to a Kohl’s or UPS Store
Amazon has made returns easy for Prime and non-Prime members alike. You no longer have to hunt down a box and packing tape or print a shipping label.
Instead, you can simply take the item to your local Kohl’s or UPS Store for a free return. You can do this at certain Whole Foods Market locations as well.
You will receive a QR code from Amazon. Then, at the store, an associate will scan the code, take the item you are returning, and package it up and ship it back to Amazon for you.
Learn more: To find out whether this return option is available for a particular item that you wish to return, log in to your Amazon account and go to Your Orders, Amazon says.
9. Use old boxes to donate to charity
Wondering what to do with the empty Amazon boxes collecting in your garage? You could recycle them — or you could use them to send your unwanted goods to charity instead.
Amazon partners with Give Back Box to encourage people to declutter their homes and donate to charity.
It works like this: After you’ve unpacked your Amazon order, look around your home for items that are in good condition but that you no longer need or want. Then, put them in the Amazon box, go to the Give Back Box website for a free shipping label and send your excess off to a good cause.
Learn more: Visit the Give Back Box website. To print a free shipping label, click on Amazon’s logo.
Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.