Amazon Prime Day is coming up. Focus will be on consumer staples to counter surging inflation, experts say

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Amazon Prime Day is one of the most anticipated shopping events of the year.

But in 2022, shoppers may be less interested in backyard entertaining or Black Friday-type deals and more eager to score discounts on consumer staples to counteract runaway inflation.

“People who want to participate in Prime Day are going to be focusing more on practical purchases than fun stuff,” said Julie Ramhold, a consumer analyst at DealNews.com, of the two-day shopping event.  

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For the online retailer, this is also an opportunity to underscore its value, added Casey Runyan, a deal expert at online discount marketplace Brad’s Deals.

“Amazon is very much wanting to prove the value of that Prime subscription, so I do think we’ll see some really good deals on necessities, such as toilet paper, paper towels, toothpaste, deodorant and laundry detergent,” she said.

To that end, savvy shoppers should make the most of the upcoming sale, which starts at 3 a.m. Eastern on July 12 and runs for 48 hours.

How to get the best deals — on the right stuff

Dann Tardif | Stone | Getty Images

Here’s how snag the best deals on Prime Day — and avoid overspending on the things you don’t need right now.

Expect to find the best discounts on instant pots, fitness trackers and Amazon devices like the Kindle, Fire TV streamer and even their private-label clothing, Ramhold said.

Already, Amazon is advertising a 24-inch Fire TV for only $90, nearly half off the retail price.

Other early deals include up to 55% off the second-generation Echo Show, Kindle Paperwhite and Eero Mesh Wi-Fi routers.


Amazon quarterly sales, change from prior year

Physical stores

Total sales

40%

20

0

−20

2019

2020

2021

​ ​

Source: Company filings. As of Q4 2021.

Amazon quarterly sales, change

from prior year

Physical stores

Total sales

40%

20

0

−20

2019

2020

2021

Source: Company filings. As of Q4 2021.

Amazon quarterly sales, change from prior year

Physical stores

Total sales

40%

20

0

−20

2019

2020

2021

Source: Company filings. As of Q4 2021.

Markdowns on laptops and other electronics may not be as worthwhile, Ramhold cautioned. “We should see a bigger selection and better prices when back-to-school shopping hits,” she said.

In order to take advantage of Prime Day deals, you must be an Amazon Prime member. 

You can sign up for a month-to-month membership or a free trial. Deal hunters should be wary of the annual membership, however, Ramhold advised, since the retail giant raised the price to $139 from $119 earlier this year.

Next, download the Amazon app, scroll through upcoming deals and mark the items you are interested in as “watching,” she said. You’ll receive a notification when the price drops.

When a deal is live, add the item to your cart immediately. Some intermittent “Lightning Deals” sell out quickly, Ramhold said. Once it is in your cart, you’ll have 15 minutes to decide whether to complete the purchase.

Make that wish list and start tracking prices now

If there is a specific product that you are set on and you don’t see it in upcoming sales, you can create a wish list and Amazon will alert you if it does become part of a Prime Day deal.

To capitalize on your savings even more, start price tracking now, said Kristin McGrath, a shopping expert at RetailMeNot.

McGrath recommends a price-tracking browser extension like Camelcamelcamel or Keepa to keep an eye on price changes and get price-drop alerts. “Price trackers are the easiest way to monitor just how good a deal really is, especially for big-ticket items,” she said.

Also, ask Alexa for help. Amazon has been known to offer shoppers exclusive deals, or early access, if they shop via an Echo device,” McGrath said.

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