THE SHOPPERS are getting ready for Amazon’s annual sales event next week, and you can get ready now to be ready to grab a bargain.
Prime Day starts Monday June 21 and ends Tuesday June 22, but by taking a few steps now you can shop safely and get the best deals.
The online retail giant is set to slash the prices of millions of products for Amazon Prime Day.
Deal hunters can usually access deals from domestic brands like Nintendo, Samsung, and Sony, as well as Amazon products like Kindle and Alexa devices.
You may be able to buy a discounted TV to watch euros or some new clothes for the return of the sunny days.
There will likely be some great discounts, but not all offers will be the most competitive, so it’s always worth shopping around.
How to protect yourself when shopping online
- AT THE INSTINCT, VISCERAL: Stick to popular retailers like Amazon, Currys, and Argos.
If you check out lesser-known sites, trust your instincts. Don’t buy from a place that doesn’t look professional, has weird pop-ups, or sells items for prices that sound too good to be true.
- FALSE NEWS: Do not reveal any unnecessary personal information. All you need to give is your name, address, and payment details.
Avoid clicking on links in emails. Phishing scams can originate from messages that appear legitimate, but send you to bogus sites that collect information to steal your identity.
Instead, type the URL directly into the search bar.
- NOT SO SMART: Use your computer instead of your mobile. Most phones don’t have antivirus software, and it’s harder to tell if shortened URLs used on social media are legitimate.
Also, wait until you are at home and on a password protected wifi network, as public hotspots do not protect your data. Regularly update your browser to strengthen your security.
- BE FED UP: Using the same password for every retailer you sign up to might seem like an easy option, but it makes it easier for hackers.
Use tough passwords, make them different for each site, and change them every few months.
- ADDRESS IT: Verify that the website you are using has HTTPS in the URL, because the “S” indicates that the way your information is sent is secure. Another sign of a secure site is a small padlock on the screen.
You should also watch out for scams.
Here’s how to make sure you get a good deal this Prime Day.
1. Sign up for Amazon Prime
Unsurprisingly, you need to be an Amazon Prime member to access the deals offered at this annual sales event.
The Prime membership costs £ 79 per year or £ 7.99 per month. It’s cheaper to buy annually but you will have to pay all at once.
It gives you access to free music and TV delivery and streaming services.
But if you think you’re not using them regularly, it might be worth signing up for a 30-day free trial to take advantage of Prime Day and then canceling before the period ends.
Set a reminder so you don’t forget to end your trial or you’ll be billed.
2. Compare prices
Get an idea of what you want to buy so you can quickly assess if you’re getting a good deal.
Don’t buy just for fun, especially if the price seems high.
An item may have better value elsewhere or even at a different time of year.
You can compare historical product prices on websites such as PriceSpy, Idealo, and CamelCamelCamel where you can also set up price alerts to notify you when the cost of an item drops.
Check how much of the same or similar item is in elsewhere using Google Shopping.
3. Look at reviews to determine if a product is worth it
A product review can give you an indication of the quality or usefulness of a product to a customer so that you can decide whether it is worth buying.
Some may post photos of the product or just write down their experience and give a rating.
Pay attention to red flags, for example if there are many reviews written on the same day or if there is unnatural language as these could be bogus.
4. Beware of scams
There are plenty of decent discounts on offer during Prime Day, but this has also encouraged scammers to try and take advantage of buyers.
They may list items with fake reviews that will either be of poor quality or will not arrive at all.
How To Get Cash Back Every Time You Shop
DO NOT use a cashback site or app means you miss every time you shop. Here are some top tips from full-time bargain seeker Collette Jones.
- Discover the welcome offers: Cashback sites have amazing freebies for new customers, like takeout from Just Eat or a Benefit beauty product.
- Look for cashback on everything: You can claim things like MOT, insurance, train tickets, and vacations
- Save money at the supermarket: It’s a good idea to download the Shopmium, Check-outSmart, Quidco ClickSnap, GreenJinn, and Snap and Save apps from TopCashback. Check what’s available, pick it up in store, and upload a photo of the receipt to get your refund
- Combine cashback offers with promotions: Double the savings and maximize cashback by matching third-party offers from cashback sites with in-store and online promotions. You can’t always use discount codes with cashback, but you can take advantage of sales and offers like free gifts
- Download cashback notifications: The Honey website has a great notifier. It sits in your browser, appears when you click on a website that offers cashback, and looks for discount codes
Consumer watchdog Which one? regularly warned against fake reviews
Use FakeSpot to check whether the item is genuine or not.
The site analyzes the reviews to see if they are “trusted” or not so you can decide if you trust the seller.
5. Buy now to save time
Amazon often hosts flash sales during Prime Day that can last anywhere from two to six hours.
Make sure you don’t miss them by pre-filling your cart with the items that interest you.
You can then wait and see if the price drops and be ready to complete your purchase.
6. Check if you are eligible for cash back
You can get paid to buy using cashback websites such as Quidco and Topcashback.
First check if there are any offers on these cashback websites.
For example, Quidco currently offers 2% cash back on purchases of Amazon Echo or Fire TV devices.
You will then need to register and visit the Amazon website through Quidco to get this offer.
7. Know your rights
Buyers are entitled under the Consumer Rights Act to a full refund within the first 30 days of purchase if an item is defective, damaged, inappropriate, or not as described.
This gives you protection if you are not happy with an item you order so keep your receipt by email.
You can also get additional protection by paying with a credit card.
This allows you to request a refund from your credit card provider for purchases worth between £ 100 and £ 30,000.
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Amazon is already offering early deals on Echo devices and other products.
The website is not the only place to find deals. Lidl has cut the price of baby products by 20%.
Meanwhile, Aldi has saved up to 40% on its Specialbuys sale.