Golden Valley, MN (KARE) - It's time for the 11 Amazon hacks you should know before the online sales blitz this holiday season—and by hacks we don't mean ways Amazon can steal your social security number—we are talking cheats, shortcuts and savings.
Amazon Warehouse & Outlet
First up, Amazon has a warehouse, and it's called—creatively—Amazon Warehouse. Here, the company sells open box items and gently used stuff at a discount. They also rent out textbooks for you students or Good Will Hunting types.
There's also Amazon Outlet, which offers discount items, markdowns, clearance, and overstocks.
Amazon App Instant Cash
OK, if you haven't use the Amazon app, the company will give you a free five bucks for opening that up.
Amazon Reload Credit
You can also save by reloading your credit balance with a checking account instead of a credit card. By using that, it saves Amazon about 2 percent in processing fees with the credit card companies, according to Jim Wang, founder of Wallethacks. Amazon will then pass that savings to you. How nice of them.
Sell Your Shopping Data
If you don't mind selling your shopping habits, install an app like ShopTracker -- which studies your shopping behavior. They'll pay $3 just to sign up and $3 a month after that. $40 a year? Not bad.
If you are a prime member you can tailor it to your situation. There's Amazon Family, which gives exclusive diaper and baby coupons. There's also Amazon Student, which gives half off for your prime membership. Sweet for the Prime TV in the dorms.
No Rush Bonus Option
Here's a cool one. No-rush rewards. When you order something on Amazon Prime, there's sometimes an option for no-rush, 6-day shipping. If you can wait, you'll get rewards like a dollar toward music, ebooks, videos, all sorts of stuff.
Hold Amazon Accountable
Speaking of delivery, if Amazon doesn't live up to what it promised, complain! Doesn't matter if it's snowmaggeden. Should the company fail to deliver on its two-day Prime promise, they might extend your Prime membership or credit your account.
Don’t forget Twitch
Do you like video games or watching others play video games? Amazon bought Twitch in 2014, when it already had like 55 million users on it. Twitch is the world’s leading social video game site. If you are a Prime member, Twitch Prime is free for your teens at home.
And last hack – Smile! Amazon Smile that is. If you start your Amazon shopping with the website smile.amazon.com, the company will donate .5 percent of your order price to a charity of your choice. That's money on their end -- not yours. Safe shopping and happy hacking everybody!