How to Buy on Amazon

Last updated: April 20, 2017 - 3:30pm EDT

Like a real-life supermarket, on Amazon, you'll first need to find the item you want, add it to your shopping cart, and then check out. Once you get the hang of shopping in a virtual space, it’s really quite simple. But if you’re a beginner, we’ve got you covered here with some basic instructions on how to buy on Amazon.com.

To buy on Amazon:

  1. Sign in to your Amazon account.
  2. Hover over Departments and click on a category. When you find an item you want, click on it.
  3. Review the item, and click Add to Cart.
  4. Click Proceed to Checkout.
  5. Enter a shipping address and click Continue.
  6. Choose a payment method and click Continue.
  7. Click Place Your Order.

Do you need a little more information? Check out our detailed step-by-step instructions below with pictures to make sure you get every step of the process!

Detailed Instructions on how to buy on Amazon

1. Sign into your Amazon account.

Go to www.amazon.com in your web browser and log in.  To do this, move your mouse over "Hello, Sign In" and click Sign In. Then click in the boxes highlighted in the right screenshot below and type in your email address and account password, respectively.  Finally, click Sign In Using Our Secure Server.

Amazon sign in screen

2. Search through departments.

Let's say that your toaster just went on the fritz, and you're looking for a new one.  Let's start by moving the mouse over Departments, then Home, Garden, and Tools, and then clicking Kitchen and Dining.

Amazon departments

3. Find a specific category.

Now, let's click on Ovens and Toasters, and then click Toasters, just to narrow things down a bit more.

Amazon categories

4. View and select an item.

You'll now see a list of toasters available for sale. 

Amazon items for sale

Across the left-hand side of the screen, you'll see a series of options that you can click to narrow down your search even more.  For example, you can look for a product:

  • in a certain colour
  • from a certain company or brand
  • based on how well it has been reviewed by Amazon customers
  • within a certain price range
  • based on who is selling it

The product information itself will show you, among other things:

  • what the product looks like, and if there are any variations that you can look at
  • what the product is called
  • its price when you buy it (and if you save anything off retail price)
  • when you can expect to get it, or how many are left in stock
  • what other customers are saying about the product

When you find a product that you like, click on its name.

5. Add the item to your cart.

Here, you'll see some more detailed information about the product you've selected.  If you've decided that it's what you want, click the drop-down menu marked "QTY" to select how many of this product you want. Then click Add to Cart.

Add Amazon item to cart

6. Proceed to the Amazon checkout.

If this is the only thing you want to buy, click Proceed to Checkout.

Proceed to checkout when shopping is complete

7. Enter a shipping address.

You'll now have to pick an address to send your delivery to. If you don't have one, you'll have to create a new one. 

Enter your shipping address

Click in each of the boxes or drop-down menus underneath "Enter A New Shipping Address" and type in or select:

  • your full name
  • your street address
  • your unit address (if you live in an apartment, condo, etc.)
  • the city in which you live
  • the state, province, or region in which you live
  • your mailing code (doesn't have to be a U.S. Z.I.P. code)
  • the country in which you live
  • your phone number

There are additional options underneath "Optional Delivery Preferences", where you can:

  • choose whether or not you're available on weekends to receive delivered packages
  • provide Amazon with the access code to your apartment complex or gated community (if you're allowed) so a delivery person can get in
  • choose whether or not the address your items will be shipped to is the same one that you want your bill to come to

When you've entered all of your information, click Continue to move on.

8. View and confirm your order summary.

On the left, you'll see your order summary.  On the right, you'll be asked to select what kind of shipping you want (if applicable).  Click the button next to the type you want.  Usually, the faster the shipping speed, the more it will cost you. When you're done, click Continue.

Confirm your order

9. Choose a payment method.

You'll now have to select a method of paying for your purchase. 

Choose a payment method

For the purposes of this tutorial, we'll assume that you want to pay by using a credit card.  To add a new credit card:

  • Scroll down to the section that says "Credit or Debit Cards." 
  • Click in the box that says "Name on Card" and type in your name as it appears on your credit card. 
  • Click in the box that says "Card Number" and type in your credit card number (with no spaces). 
  • Click the two drop-down menus labelled "Expiration Date" to select the month and year that your credit card expires.
  • Click Add Your Card to add this credit card as a payment option.

When you're done, this credit card will automatically be selected as a payment option, so you can just click Continue.

10. Confirm and place your order.

On the next screen, you can review your order and make any final changes, including the type of shipping you want.  If you're happy with what you have, click Place Your Order.

Place your order on Amazon

You'll receive a confirmation receipt via email.  Now all that's left to do is to wait for your item to arrive! 

 

And that’s how you use Amazon to order something! If you want to learn how to search for items better to make your shopping experience more efficient, be sure to check out the rest of our step-by-step tutorials in the Amazon course. If you’re interested in learning how to bypass some of those pesky shipping fees, check out our article on how to get free shipping with Amazon.

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