Move over, Black Friday; it’s Christmas in July as Amazon Prime Day officially kicks off at midnight Pacific. To be more specific, it’s off to the races when the clock strikes 12 on Monday, July 15.
If online shopping was a competitive sport, think of Prime Day as being the big game. That’s because it takes planning, strategy, adjusting on the fly and even a little stubborn determination to score the best deals.
But here’s something else to consider: just because you might be led to believe that certain Prime Day sales are the best deals out there, that doesn’t necessarily make it true. Part of your preparation for Prime Day should also include being aware that fake deals are bound to pop up, and we can help you spot them.
The Prime Day frenzy
If you’ve shopped Prime Day in previous years, you’ve at least got an idea of how it works and of course that begins with having a Prime membership in order to take part. The difference this year is that the sale’s previous success has convinced Amazon to turn Prime Day into a two-day event, which opens the door to many more discounted items and the potential for an extra time commitment.
It’s all about watching for deals that go live at different intervals. Even if you already have a plan in place for products you want to buy, it can become a hectic mess watching for every sale including certain Lightning Deals that have the tendency to sell out within minutes of going live.
That can lead to tunnel vision where the only objective is to get the item into your cart and on the way to your house. There are reasons, however, to work in a little time to double-check the deal before going all-in.
Best deals or fake deals?
So how do you know if you’re not only getting a good deal but if you’re actually getting a deal at all? Below are some tips to help make your shopping adventures run more smoothly, and not just on Prime Day.
Do your homework
- If you already have certain products in mind that you know (or hope) will be discounted during Prime Day, that’s a good start. That way, you already know the current prices and can check them against other retailers before and during Prime Day. And it gives you a chance to read the reviews.
Use price-tracking sites like CamelCamelCamel
- Taking it a step further, this site (or their Camelizer browser extension if you prefer) tracks pricing history for a large number of products on Amazon to help you determine a real deal versus a fake one. It doesn’t matter if it’s Amazon that’s selling the item or a third-party, prices are bound to fluctuate – sometimes over a wide range.
- Using this tool will help you cut through the hype to see if the listed sale price is legit, or falsely being presented as such. For instance, let’s say you come across an item that was listed for $20 in May, bumped up to $35 in June, then kicked back down to $20 as a “sale price” during Prime Day. Sneaky and unethical, but it happens. Read more about CamelCamelCamel by tapping or clicking here.
Know who’s selling the item(s)
- Just because you’re shopping on Amazon’s site doesn’t mean they’re the ones selling the item you’re looking to buy. There’s nothing wrong with third-party sellers, but not all of them are on the up-and-up.
- Not only can bad actors posing as sellers list fake sale prices, but they could also be selling fake items. Look for the seller info, read the item description closely including return policies and warranty info. And check both seller and product reviews.
Watch for fake reviews
- It’s not just fake sales and fake products to watch out for, there’s also a history of issues with fake reviews. To separate honest reviews from the rest, use Fakespot. Check out our report on this helpful site by tapping or clicking here.
- Another way to avoid fake sales is to shop around on sites other than Amazon. Major retailers like Walmart, Target and eBay aren’t sitting this one out to let Amazon alone get all your money. Check those Prime Day deals against sale prices at the other sites before deciding if and where you’ll make your purchase.
Click or tap here to check out Prime Day details on Amazon’s site. And happy shopping!