Here’s the breakdown...
My first purchase was in May 2013. I used a gift card to buy a $9 tool kit for my phone.
My second purchase was a whopping 8 months later. I bought 2 lunch boxes for $39.99 each. At this point, I had a 1-year-old and was officially a stay-at-home mom. With a huge lunch box, I could carry ample food while we explored outdoors.
My third purchase wasn't until the end of the year. I was pregnant and bought cloth diapers. All purchases for 2014 were on gift cards and totaled $234.91.
In 2015, our new baby arrived and all of our online shopping ($588.36) was for the kids. I bought linens for their beds, books, more cloth diapers, clothes, and furniture. The balances on our gift cards ran out so I was now using my own money to shop.
In 2016, I realized I could earn points for my purchases ($528.13 ). This card matched the points for the first year, so I bought items for the house, myself and the girls in order to max out my rewards. Some of my purchases included a menstrual cup, a documentary, and a proud wife’s t-shirt.
In my 4th year I became a Prime member for $99. Being the resourceful wombman that I am, I strove to exhaust my membership benefits which meant my overall purchases rose 15,000% ($1,386.12 for the year).
The convenience of online shopping meant I no longer had to drag our small children to physical stores. Instead I bought most household goods online. The least expensive items were sippy cups for $2.08 and an iPad for $194.49.
In 2018, I almost doubled my prior years' purchases ($2,039.86), spending one-third on diapers alone ($699.49).
In 2019, I bought over 400 food items for a grand total of $4,028.08. That’s most of my purchases online and about $336 a month. I started grocery shopping online because we multiplied again.
Amazon has three different stores that carry different brands and products - Whole Foods, Prime Pantry, and Amazon Fresh.
Thankfully, I was gifted diapers and we also spent most of the year in our birthday suits.
In 2020, we rarely left our home. So everything was bought online increasing our spending by almost 200%.
While this analysis was definitely shocking. It revealed to me the power of a convenient, trustworthy and customer-focused business.
Especially as a nursing mother, I relied on Amazon to help me organize and systematize our lives. For example, if I'm not 100% satisfied with a purchase, I can return it with the click of a button. Plus, Amazon conveniently partners with local businesses which makes walk-in returns, like sneakers that do not fit, a lot easier.
Because of their superior customer service and return process, Amazon has become a strategic partner in helping me fulfill my motherly duties.
Here is a summary of our seven years as recurring customers...
I was introduced to Amazon by loved ones.
I became a customer after starting a family.
My first $200+ spent were gift card purchases.
It took over a year and a half (19 months to be exact) before I purchased an Amazon item with my own money.
Amazon’s partnership with my cash back credit cards made me an even more loyal customer.
I spent more in 2020 than all the previous years combined.
As a customer I went from being super frugal (1st purchase was a DIY kit) to paying for grocery delivery and regularly tipping the driver (a cost I considered worth it as a mom of multiple children).
Amazon earned my trust so much so that by my 7th year, I purchased my largest expense to date - a $400 piece of furniture.
My smallest purchase was a used book for $0.01 followed by a $0.47 banana.
My most frequent category ... food.
My most returned items... 64 items of food ($242.67) followed by 51 items of clothes for $1,048.10.
While I’m a huge fan of Amazon, there are a few considerations you should know...
While grocery delivery is free with Prime, there are purchase minimums. This means you have to order at least $35 worth of food for free delivery. This made me more efficient at compiling grocery lists and ordering groceries once a week.
Tips can add up, so if you have a family member or trusted neighbor to shop, always ask them first.
The shoppers are not the best at picking produce (I’ve returned moldy peppers, dented cans, brown meat and spoiled fruit).
Some items aren’t available online, but are in-store (for example pancake mix was frequently sold-out online, but was found in abundance in stores).
Some in-store prices are better (for example corn bread is $0.79 compared to $0.50)
Despite the cons, I regularly depended on Amazon to feed and provide essentials for our family. The peace-of-mind was definitely worth some inflated prices especially as a mother with little ones. As our girls age, I plan to go back to in-person shopping (especially for our food).
Curious about your lifetime spendings at Amazon? Go to account settings and download your reports.
Need to schedule a one-on-one? Use code: HEART2HEART.
Until next time...
Love The Journey,