6 Slick Ways to Save Money on Amazon You Probably Don’t Know About

Workers in an Amazon warehouse
AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin
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I’ve become obsessed with shopping on Amazon.

It started one Christmas when I ordered presents through Amazon Prime. Everything from a butter churner to an Instax Instant Film camera were delivered to my front door within 24 hours.

It was exhilarating.

Unfortunately, the exciting feeling continued — and I still spend way too much money on impulsive buys.

However, there are ways I’m redeeming myself — or at least justifying my spending…

How to Save Money on Amazon — Every Time

These nine online apps are helping me work through my Amazon addiction and save some money. And they’re actually really easy to use — and free.

Trust me, I have no patience for 10-step sign-up processes.

1. Use These Free Amazon Gift Cards

What do you usually do with your receipts? You check out, they hand you a mile-long piece of paper, and you frantically stuff it to the bottom of a grocery bag. Pretty worthless.

But a free app called Fetch Rewards will turn them into gift cards. It partners with tons of brands to give you points for every grocery receipt you share. Then you can exchange them for gift cards to places like Amazon, Walmart, Chipotle and dozens of other retailers.  

And it’s perfect for those of us who don’t want to put a ton of work into this. All you have to do is send Fetch a photo of your receipt, and it does everything for you. No scanning barcodes or searching for offers — and you can use it with any grocery receipt.

When you download the app, use the code PENNY to automatically earn 2,000 points when you scan your first receipt. Then start snapping photos of your recent receipts to see how many points you can earn without a single trip to the store!

Not so bad for a useless receipt, right?

2. Get up to 5% Cash-back on Everything You Buy

Steve Dabenport/Getty Images

One of our favorite ways to save at Amazon is with Rakuten, a cash-back site that gives you up to 5% cash-back on everything you purchase at Amazon.

There’s no catch.

You just have to sign up for a free Rakuten account. Plus, they’ll give you free $10 gift card to Amazon for giving the site a try. To earn your gift card:

        1. Sign up for Rakuten with your email or Facebook account.
        2. Use the Rakuten portal the next time you need to buy something. It’s connected to thousands of stores, including Walmart, Amazon and Target. You’ll need to make your first purchase through the site within 90 days and spend at least $25.
        3. Your account will be credited with rewards points you can cash in for your $10 Amazon gift card.

3. Use This Free $225 When You Checkout

Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder

If we told you that before you head to Amazon, you could get paid to watch cooking videos on your computer, you’d probably laugh.

It’s too good to be true, right?

But we’re serious. A website called InboxDollars will pay you to watch short video clips online. One minute you might watch a chef teach you the recipe for fudge brownies and the next you might get the latest updates on Kardashian drama.

All you have to do is choose which videos you want to watch and answer a few quick questions about them afterward. Brands pay InboxDollars to get these videos in front of viewers, and it passes a cut onto you.

It’s possible to earn up to $225 per month watching these videos — that could make a serious dent in your Amazon bill.

Unlike other sites, InboxDollars pays you in cash — no points or gift cards — and it’s already paid its users more than $56 million.

It takes about one minute to sign up, and you’ll immediately earn a $5 bonus to get you started.

4. Get Another Free $20 to Spend at Amazon 

I’m already addicted to earning cash back on my grocery hauls through Ibotta.

But now it’s expanded well past groceries and into other realms — like Amazon.

If you sign up for Amazon Prime (highly recommend if you’re an addict) through Ibotta, you’ll earn a $20 Amazon gift card. If you’re already a Prime member, no worries. You can still earn cash back. We’ve found tons of Amazon offers on Ibotta. Here are some examples:

  • 5% cash back on home services
  • 3% cash back on fashion
  • 3% cash back on home and kitchen
  • 3% cash back on pet supplies
  • 3% cash back on luggage
  • 3% cash back on devices

All you have to do is download Ibotta (you’ll snag a free $10 for signing up) then shop through the app.

5. Take a Walk and Earn Amazon Gift Cards

No extreme physical activity or pulled muscles required for this money-making trick. All you need to do is download the Shopkick app.

Once you sign up, the app pays you in “kicks” for walking into certain stores, including Walmart, Target, TJMaxx and more. You can redeem them for gift cards to a number of retailers, including Amazon.

Pro Tip

Shopkick pays you even more kicks for photos of receipts that include qualifying items you purchased in-store with a connected credit or debit card.

You can also earn kicks for online purchases. You don’t have to do anything; your linked cards will automatically apply your kicks.

But don’t make the mistake of buying things you don’t need just for kicks; you know better than that.

6. Earn 5% Cash back on Your Amazon Purchases

If you’re looking for a passive way to earn some money throughout the year, a cash-back credit card is perhaps one of the easiest methods.

You just have to be sure you don’t get too carried away with those purchases — and that the card is paid off at the end of each billing period.

If you’re an avid Amazon shopper — like, you look nowhere else for anything — you might want to consider the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card from Chase. You’ll get:

  • 5% cash back on all your Amazon purchases.
  • 2% back at restaurants, gas stations and drugstores.
  • 1% back on everything else.
  • Plus, you get a $70 Amazon gift card when approved.

If you don’t use Amazon enough to make that card worth it, here’s another option we like: It’s the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. Its claim to fame? You’ll earn an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all your purchases. Plus, if you spend $500 in your first three months of opening the card (hi, groceries), you’ll pocket a $150 bonus.

There’s no annual fee, and the cash-back rewards don’t expire. We checked Credible’s annual rewards calculator, and it estimates $417 in annual rewards based on our spending habits.* (You can enter your unique spending habits and see what you’d earn, too.)

Get signed up — and 0% intro APR for 15 months — here.

*Annual Rewards amounts will change based on the amounts you enter. The monthly spending category names and definitions may vary among issuers, and categories may not align one-to-one.

The information for the Chase Freedom Unlimited card has been collected independently by The Penny Hoarder. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. The Penny Hoarder is a partner of Credible.

Carson Kohler (@CarsonKohler) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. Although she spends too much on Amazon, she considers herself an otherwise financially responsible young adult.