Why I’ve Been Shopping On Amazon

by Merissa on April 7, 2012

in Thrifty Living

Post image for Why I’ve Been Shopping On Amazon

Truth be told the UPS man has been at my house a little more lately. You can always tell a blogger by the amount of cardboard boxes by their dumpster but not only am I a blogger, I live in the country.

Alot of those packages I've been getting are from Amazon. Last year I accidentally forgot to cancel my subscription to Amazon Prime, this year I was more than happy to renew it. Over the last year I used my free Prime shipping on Amazon more times than I could count. It was so worth it!

So why have I been shopping on Amazon so much? It's simple really. I don't go to town unless we have a doctors appointment. Lately that's been more often than I'm used to but I don't get a chance to run errands anyway because it's too much to take a baby into all the stores I generally shop at.

Here's just a few of the reasons I've been shopping from home:

1. It's convenient. No having to get dressed up and get everything and everyone ready to go to the store. I can shop whenever. The nice thing about Prime is that I always have free shipping so I can order one item at a time. Which really helps because I can order things when I remember!

2. It's fast. 2 day shipping is awesome. Normally by the time I start to make my list and when I finally get to the store it's been more than a week. So for us, it's actually much faster to order online then to plan a trip to town.

3. I can buy good brands at lower prices. I buy almost all organics and they are expensive and in a very limited supply here. When I order online I can get them at a lower price and still get the same quality foods.

4. I can stock up without using coupons and without shopping at Sam's Club. I'm pretty sure that Amazon is generally cheaper than Sam's Club anyways. I also like the fact that I don't have to take that extra step and search for coupons.

5. I can buy Made in the USA products! Since Amazon is cheaper and has a better selection than Walmart, I can usually get the same item I was going to buy anyway but a better, Made in the US version!

Now before you start yellin at me for not supporting my local economy, let me tell you how this has helped me do just that. When I do make a trip to town I haven't been heading to Walmart. With the money I save by not driving to town and buy paying less for the things I'd buy anyways, I've been taking my shopping to local businesses when I do get to town. I steer clear of the big box stores and focus on checking out what I can find at the small downtown mom and pop shops. Sometimes I end up finding some great deals! Plus there are many things I can't buy online like produce, dairy, and refrigerated items so those still have to be purchase in town or from local farmers when they have to be purchased.

Do you do alot of shopping online? How do you balance online shopping to supporting your local economy?

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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Emily April 7, 2012 at 8:58 am

For us, buying from town doesn’t really promote our local economy. Town for us is over 50 miles away. So the money that goes there very seldom finds it’s way back to our little community. I buy from our local second hand store when I can. Everything mailed is through our local post office. And I do what I can to support our community with raffles, garage sales, and trips to the the mini-mart and our local gas station. If I need work done at the house I would rather pay someone from our small local community rather than go to town to get it done. I have no qualms buying from amazon for things I can’t get here locally. I would rather do that than to go to town for whatever it is I’m looking for as at least I know it’s cheap, and I has a larger selection of goods.

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2 Allison Mesa April 7, 2012 at 10:30 am

I support the local economy through mostly immediate needs like items at the feed store, or services such as independently owned auto shops. I shop amazon for things that are harder to get!

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3 Mel Free April 7, 2012 at 10:35 am

I was wondering if the Amazon Prime would be worth getting for us?

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4 Little House on the Prairie Living April 7, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Mel I think it all depends but I totally love Amazon Prime (if you couldn’t tell from my post, LOL)

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5 Lana April 7, 2012 at 1:24 pm

An Amazon distribution center is being built about 3 miles from our house. Maybe I would be shopping local by buying from them once it opens! Seriously, it is bring hundreds of jobs to our town. It is something I am pondering.

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6 Merissa April 7, 2012 at 1:28 pm

Wow that’s cool!

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7 Heather :) :) :) April 7, 2012 at 3:12 pm

I don’t do a lot of shopping on-line, simply because I don’t have the money to do so. However, whenever I need to buy non-food items now, I’ll check on-line first…Amazon so far, and I’ve found some good deals and been able to get free shipping. It’s really helpful, because I don’t always have access to a car to get around town. Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

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8 Pat April 7, 2012 at 4:25 pm

The Husband and I were just talking the other day about buying his one ‘vise’ /treat online and having it delivered. Right now it is the ONLY reason we EVER make a trip to WM. I don’t like doing it; but it is what it is.
Brach’s Peppermints.
If anyone knows where we can get the 3.75 lb bag cheaper…let me know! Please.

Because we don’t shop there– we DO SHOP locally and at smaller stores. I love out affiliated type grocer that we have in town (closer than WM) David’s …I don’t mind shopping at Dollar General. It saves on gas and with the saving from going to big box stores…I find it is worth my while. We also recently had a new thrift store open up near us too. I love thrift shopping for clothes and other things that we might be needing. If I can find it there first without paying high prices for it– then why not?
I also buy clothes up- and use them to make things I may need. The fabric is good– just gets repurposed. Cheaper than buying by the yard!

Blessed Easter Season- Pat

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9 Beth April 7, 2012 at 5:08 pm

I’d love to see some of the deals you buy on Amazon, if you don’t mind sharing. I have trouble telling if the things are good deals when I look them up. I very much like to buy organic products but am still figuring out how to do that without spending too much.

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10 Merissa April 7, 2012 at 7:09 pm

I’m going to start trying to post more things I’m getting on this page: http://www.littlehouseliving.com/special-deals I love to stalk Amazon for the organic deals!

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11 Beth April 8, 2012 at 6:08 am

Thank you so much!

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12 KimH April 7, 2012 at 9:03 pm

We love Amazon too.. and trust me.. Amazon loves us too! ;)
I did the same thing with the prime.. I forgot to cancel it and then just kept it. I used to spend so much extra buying something I wasnt really interested in to get “free” shipping. And even better, all of our grown kids get free shipping as well.

I love shopping online since I really dont love to shop. It wears me out and most of the time I dont find what Im looking for anyways. :(

I still support local businesses even though I do shop online.. Im also a member of a 10 farmer group CSA and participate in different aspects of it all year long.

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13 Verna April 8, 2012 at 4:32 pm

I love online shopping, and we just got an Amazon Prime membership. So far we love it. Can you buy perishable/frozen foods from there? Have you had any experience with that?

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14 Barbara Russell April 9, 2012 at 9:30 am

My husband pays $8 for watch on demand with Netflix . I am thinking free trial of Amazon Prime. See if their watch on demand is as good as Netflix . If so we will save money and get free shipping. Wish it covered Amazon marketplace too as I am always buying used books there if library doesn’t have them

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15 Cathy January 10, 2013 at 4:26 pm

The selection isn’t as good but for the price we’ve been making it work since cancelling Netflix. Between Amazon Prime and Hulu we aren’t hurting for entertainment, lol.

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16 Coni May 28, 2012 at 5:03 am

I have worked for Amazon for 12 years and I thank you all for shopping with us.

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17 Ann July 2, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Me and the UPS man are tight. I order from Amazon all our baking needs from them. We are gluten, soy, dairy and corn free, so we buy a lot of the flours we need from the, the xanthan gum, spices, etc etc. We buy mostly Bob’s Red Mill products and get them far cheaper than the local health food store. She is outrageous on her prices. I feel that even if I am going to Walmart for the rest of our groceries (with the exception of produce because we live in the land of produce stands-they are everywhere and open year round and carry local produce) I am supporting someone’s local economy. Frankly, there are no “local” grocery stores in our area anyway.

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18 Elaine January 7, 2013 at 2:22 am

I’ve read articles in the past about how terrible the working conditions are in amazon’s distribution centers – so I feel guilty about shopping there. I mean I’ve heard horror stories. A lot of it seems to be due to the free and expedited shipping deals. A quick Google search will turn up lots of articles; I won’t post a link since I don’t know your policies on that. However, I do shop at amazon sometimes. As a grad student, it’s really the best source for my books – and the free shipping deals and Prime do save me TONS of money (not to mention getting a book to me so quickly when I need it!) It seems like one of those things where you can’t be 100% certain about the ethical implications one way or the other, particularly when weighing them against your own legitimate needs. As others have said above, it does bring jobs to communities…but so does Walmart, right? I’m conflicted. This blog post and the comments have provided some positives to balance the negatives, though. I think in our highly connected world, just about everything we are involved in is tainted somewhere – AND we can more easily find out about some things (like sweatshop conditions in online retailers’ warehouses) we wouldn’t have known about in the past. We have to make the best of it, and also do whatever good we can (such as using your savings to buy from locally-owned businesses) as a bonus. It’s an imperfect world. I’ve just discovered this site today (you can probably tell; I’ve posted a number of comments – hopefully not too many!) and from what I can tell folks here are, on balance, making the world a much better place. <3

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19 Amber January 10, 2013 at 4:25 pm

Love amazon prime. We are able to watch tv shows and movies from that also.

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20 Heather January 10, 2013 at 4:25 pm

Amazon Prime – Is it worth it?
I live in a pretty rural area and have a 20 mile ride to a Wal-Mart. Major grocery store is a few more miles. As others have pointed out, I can get good quality items from Amazon that I cannot get in my local stores. Another thing, the cost equals out to 8 trips to only Wal-Mart in gas alone.
I also have downloaded the Kindle app for PC (avail. for most platforms) and regularly seek out the freebie books on canning, gardening, homesteading, etc – the offerings change all of the time. I LOVE that (I don’t think you have to be a Prime member to take advantage of this.)
Since I choose to have neither cable nor satellite TV another way I use my Prime account is to watch TV shows and movies. The selection IS different from Netflix (I also have Netflix). All in all I feel I AM saving a ton of money on the TV stuff alone, even adding in the cost of Netflix with it.
Another thing is that you can share the account by adding family members, etc. to your Prime account. Then they can take advantage of the 2 day shipping and all of the other stuff too.
FYI: I am not affiliated with Amazon in any way other than being a satisfied customer.

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21 Melissa January 10, 2013 at 4:33 pm

You know, everyone talks about buying local and supporting your local economy and I get that but here is the thing, everyone needs jobs. Truckers need their jobs, those distribution workers need their jobs, and the factory workers need their jobs. So, while I do like to buy from Mom and Pop shops I don’t feel bad when I buy from big box stores or online because while i might not be supporting my neighbor but then again I might because maybe my neighbor is a trucker or work at a distribution center.

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22 Allison January 10, 2013 at 5:15 pm

I am an Amazon Prime addict as well.=0) What food items or supplies do you purchase from Amazon on a regular basis, that are cheaper than local stores? I guess I’ve never really thought to buy foods from Amazon.

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23 Merissa January 10, 2013 at 7:24 pm

I buy almost all my gluten free flours there. I also love to buy snacks for hubby’s lunches from the Amazon Warehouse deals. And as far as non-food goes I buy all my beauty products supplies from them too (beeswax, shea butter, ect).

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24 Amanda January 10, 2013 at 7:21 pm

I LOVE Amazon! I have done extensive research using BJs Wholesale Warehouse, Walmart, Hannaford, Shaw’s and my local health food store, and Amazon has the best price 9 times out of 10. Free Prime shipping definitely sweetens the deal!

I think that while supporting the local economy is something to consider, my budget concerns win. I care more about feeding my family, buying heating oil, paying mortgage, etc. Buying local to me is a treat, and I greatly enjoy it. But until we have more disposable income, Amazon is where I go first.

There is also Amazon Local (http://local.amazon.com/national), but I have yet to explore that.

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25 Merissa January 10, 2013 at 7:31 pm

I bought my first Amazon Local deal last week to an organic online site, and I already used it and received my order!

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26 Lorie January 10, 2013 at 8:04 pm

We bought pretty much all of our Christmas presents from Amazon. They have everything!!! Plus, my husband and I earn free Amazon gift cards from Swagbucks, mPoints, crowdtap, and other places. I didn’t have to pay “real” money for any of my Christmas presents. I wish I had prime, but they won’t let you pay for Prime with gift cards – we tried!!! :) Since we don’t have prime and my husband has been on short time and laid off and I am a stay at home/homeschooling Mom, we just make sure that we either buy through their subscription program to get free shipping OR we buy things that get Free Super Saver Shipping and order in $25 or more increments. It has worked wonders for us. I’ve bought toys, undies, tools, shirts, PJs, socks, Christmas candy, groceries- including canned veggies, portable fan, Christmas ornaments, tights and so much more!! The joke around our house is to see if we can get it from Amazon!!

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27 maggi g July 7, 2013 at 5:16 pm

I live in a large urban area in florida but am retired and cant get out so much anymore. I do take the bus most of the time unless I go shopping with a friend. Its just the kitties and me so we don’t need a lot. I try to buy organic as much as possible and am also vegetarian. I have started shopping on amazon because they have good prices on bulk items and things I might need that are hard to carry home on the bus. I also am part of a group who get all organic fruits and veggies delivered from several local small farms out in the county. the prices are good and I get my carrots with dirt still on them. its great. I have gotten to know my ups driver quite well.

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