Prime Day is just a couple short weeks away, and we’ve been gearing up for this year’s 48-hour event for months. Now it’s your turn to do a little preparation so you can make the most of the biggest sale event this side of Black Friday.
You’re probably wondering why you’d need to do anything at all. After all, can’t you just open the app, browse around, and buy what looks good? Umm, excuse me, but that’s a terrible way to shop. If you just wing it, you might stumble across a good deal, but you might find one that’s actually not that great in savings or in product quality. Or worse, you might miss a great discount on something you’ve been wanting.
If you want to take full advantage of the sale and increase your odds of finding everything you’ve been wanting or needing that goes on sale during Prime Day, I really recommend spending just a little time getting ready. The steps listed below are not revolutionary by any means, but they will help you shop Prime Day 2019 smarter.
Prime Day begins Monday, July 15 at 12 a.m. PT (3 a.m. ET) and runs until Tuesday, July 16 at 11:59 p.m. PT (Wed. July 17 at 2:59 a.m. ET). Will you be ready?
1. Become an Amazon Prime member
If you’re not already a Prime member, you’re going to want to sign up soon. You have to be a paying member to access the sale. Prime costs $12.99/month or $119/year and it comes with a whole bunch of benefits that make the cost more than worth it, at least in my eyes. You won’t be able to pry my new one-day shipping (it’s still two-day in most places, currently) from my cold, dead hands.
You also get Prime Video, so you can watch the Amazon-exclusive Taylor Swift concert on July 10. There are other perks too, like Amazon Fresh grocery delivery and free books for your Kindle and exclusive sales at Whole Foods. And if you really don’t want to pay for a membership after Prime Day, just use up the free 30-day trial and cancel before it ends.
2. Set your account up ahead of time
When you’re trying to get in on a super popular Lightning Deal, you’re not going to want any slow-downs when you check out. You only have 15 minutes to buy a Lightning Deal or you lose your item so someone else can buy it. So we recommend going through your account, whether it’s new or not, and making sure you have the correct payment information and address and notifications enabled.
If you’re a first-time user, you might even want to purchase something low-cost now like one of the 50 cult-favorites on Amazon under $10. This way, you can be sure you have no issues from start to finish.
3. Make a Prime Day wishlist
We all have wish lists on Amazon, whether they’re ideas for gifts or things we want to spoil ourselves with on special occasions or just random things we need around the house. This is great, especially since Amazon will send you alerts about price drops on these items. But maybe you haven’t looked through them in a while or don’t even remember what’s on them.
You should scroll through them while you’re half-watching some awful sitcom and clean things up so you’re not getting bombarded with alerts about things you don’t want. At the same time, think about what’s not on those lists that should be. Maybe you’re out of hand soap refills or you really need more Swiffer fluid and pads, or maybe you could really use some new running socks for the gym. You could add them to your existing lists or you could start a new Prime Day list.
Bonus points to anyone who goes full Marie Kondo and deletes all their existing lists to start fresh for Prime Day.
4. Download some helpful browser extensions
If you’re shopping from a computer, download these extensions right now:
There are certainly other extensions and tools that do similar things, but these are the four I swear by and use in my personal life and can vouch for their usefulness.
Camelcamelcamel and Keepa give you a way to tell if something’s at its best price, or if it’s even really that big of a deal at all. Honey now offers price tracking too, and it has an added perk, the one it’s better known for—the extension will cycle through every available promo code it has before you click buy to give you last-minute savings potential. Everyone I know who uses it, including myself, swears by it.
Fakespot is a much different tool, and it can be handy if you’re considering buying something from a brand you don’t know already. You can use the on-page extension or paste a product URL into Fakespot.com to analyze reviews for “signs of deception” (a.k.a. fake and paid reviews). A bad grade doesn’t always mean a bad product, but a red flag is a red flag for a reason: tread with caution for anything with a C or lower.
These extensions won’t help as much if you’re planning to shop solely on mobile or—shudder—via Amazon Alexa. But you can enable email alerts so you’ll still possibly get a heads up. Or not. Sometimes the alerts are not as fast as the sales, so this is more of an “it can’t hurt to do this too” kind of step.
5. Find and follow trustworthy people covering the sale
OK this is definitely a shameless plug, but Reviewed will be heavily monitoring Prime Day using our product and online shopping expertise (and some of the steps listed above) to determine the best deals and sales over the 48-hour shopping event. We work practically around the clock so you don’t miss any of the best deals, and this year we’ll be covering everything from sales on Amazon devices and popular products like Instant Pots and TVs to Lightning Deals and more.
I get that Reviewed is not the only player in the game, but many other publishers will be throwing every deal they see at you with less of a discerning eye. Prime Day is super fast-paced and deals can come and go in a matter of minutes, but we at Reviewed will always make every effort to ensure we’re only sharing deals on products that are actually worth your money and actually on sale for a good price.