Your baby is about to arrive and your family and friends are looking to give you gifts. (YAY!)The best way to ensure you get the products that you will actually need and use? Make a baby registry.
A baby registry makes it easy for your friends and relatives to pick the right gift for your baby. Because you get to ask for exactly what you want. It’s so much better than the random gifts people give when they don’t know what you need.
But, just as cool as being able to easily ask your family for exactly what you want, most baby registries have great perks. For example, did you know that the Amazon Baby Registry has a completion bonus where you can get 10-15% off anything you order from your own registry, extra discounts for you and your family, extended return periods, and you can add items from any webiste?
Using the right baby registry is a great way to save time and money!
But with so many registries out there and so many items to choose from, it can get pretty confusing. This article is your ultimate guide to choosing the best baby registry.
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You likely are familiar with what a baby registry is and how it works. But, if not, here is a quick reminder.
A baby registry is essentially a list of items or gifts you would like to receive to help with your baby’s first year of life. It is usually created online on any online store such as Amazon or Target, etc. that offers a baby registry. You can add any product to the list that you think will help you once your baby arrives. Usually this is items such as baby suits, rompers, rocker, car seat, etc. (given that it is offered by the store),
Once you’ve created the baby registry, you can share it with your loved ones. I’ve even seen colleagues and neighbors asking for it.
When someone wants to buy something from the list, they will visit your online baby registry and pick an item or items they would like to gift you. Once an item is purchased, the store will remove it from the list automatically. This ensures you don’t get the same item twice or thrice.
With your baby registry, you can also see which items people have already purchased. Then you can plan accordingly to buy the remaining items. Often, you can get a discount for items you buy off of your own registry.
Choosing the Best Baby Registry For You
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I’ve seen people spending hours upon hours searching which baby registry is best. I’ve been one of them and trust me it can be pretty exhausting!
But what you need to know is that what works for one person may not work for you. That’s to say, the best baby registry varies from parent to parent.
First of all, you need to consider whether the store you’re looking to create the baby registry at offers all the items you want. Sometimes you want an item such as a crib or stroller from a specific brand. If so, you also need to make sure the store offers that particular item or if it has the option to add items from other stores.
Secondly, it is important to consider if it is easy to create and manage the registry. You should also keep the ease of your friends and family in your mind. For example, if you’re adding expensive items like a stroller, crib, rocker, etc. to the list, you can opt for a registry that offers group gifting where several people can contribute to purchase one item.
Another feature to look for is discounts and promotions. Many registries offer discounts that can be one-time or limited time, so you can buy the remaining items in the list at a lower price. Some stores also offer free samples and coupons when you register with them and who doesn’t love freebies? Returns and free shipping are two other factors that you might want to consider.
But keep in mind you may not find all these perks at one store. In the end, it all depends on your preferences. That being said, you can also create more than one baby registry. However, managing multiple registries definitely makes the process more complex. I don’t think you will need to do that with these options.
The 3 Most Popular (And Honestly – Best) Baby Registries
Amazon Baby Registry: Best Baby Registry For When Your Family Is Spread Out
When it comes to anything related to online retailing, Amazon is always at the top. The same is the case with the baby registry. You must have heard from many friends that it is the best baby registry. Rightly so! Amazon is the biggest online retailer. It has almost anything you might want whether it is baby-related or not. It also gives you access to all of your favorite brands.
Perks And Benefits Of The Amazon Registry
Discounts: If you’re a Prime member, you will get a 15% completion discount on one purchase of the remaining products you buy from your baby registry. For non-prime members, Amazon offers a 10% discount which is still good enough. You can redeem the discount anytime between the 60 days before and after your due date. Another great discount offered by Amazon is the diaper discount through which you get 20% off on diapers throughout the first year after your baby is born if you have a total purchase of at least $500 through your baby registry.
Free Shipping: Prime members get free two-day shipping whereas, for non-prime members, free shipping is available on orders above $25.
Free samples: You get a free sample box consisting of items, mostly sample size, for the baby as well as the parents-to-be so you can test them when your baby arrives. It is a surprise gift box and Amazon sends a mix of different items to different registry holders. But it isn’t available as soon as you’ve signed up. This welcome box is sent to you if you meet the following requirements.
you’re a Prime member,
have added at least one item from each category of the Amazon checklist to your registry and
someone has bought an item of $10 or more from your registry.
Group Gifting: This option makes it easy for your friends, family members, or colleagues to collectively buy a single/ expensive item for you.
Returns: If you want to return something you’ve purchased, you can do so within 90 days of purchase. You have an entire 365 days to return gifts from your list purchased by someone else. And you don’t have to worry about the gift giver finding out that you’ve returned the item. Amazon gives you a credit directly to your account so you can buy something else.
Universal registry: This is one of the most loved features of the Amazon baby registry. It allows you to add items to your list from other stores as well.
Cons Of The Amazon Baby Registry
The Amazon baby registry has some amazing perks. But, it’s not perfect. It can be a bit difficult to find the baby registry sign-up page (which is right here!). The universal registry button can also be difficult to find.
The biggest drawback is that some of the perks are only available to Prime members. If you’re not an Amazon Prime member, I highly recommend going straight to the Target registry.
Target Baby Registry: Best Baby Registry For trendy Moms
Target has more than 1800 stores making it pretty accessible. Its online baby registry is also super easy to navigate. Unlike Amazon, you do not have to be a prime meber to receive most or any of the perks. Target also has some of the cutest and trendiest baby gear on the market all in one place. This is why we think that Target is one of the best baby registries for trendy moms.
Perks And Benefits Of The Target Baby Registry
Discounts: You get an 8% discount on items left on your list. You can redeem it around 8 weeks before your expected due date. You’ll get a notification in terms of an email by Target to let you know when you can get the discount (available only for one day). Target also offers tons of deals, including one-year exclusive deals on baby items.
Free Shipping: Free two-day shipping is available on orders of $35 or above. You can also get free shipping on many items if you have Target RedCard™.
Free Gift Box: You get an amazing free welcome kit worth around $120. The kit has great items for the mom and the baby and it is available as soon as you create your baby registry.
Group Gifting: A great perk for your friends and family to contribute towards a single gift.
Returns: Target offers a special return policy for the baby registry through which you can return the items in your registry within a year after the arrival of your baby. But don’t take off the tags or open the items that you want to return.
Universal Registry: All you have to do is add the universal registry button to your bookmark bar and then you can add any item from other sites to your Target baby registry. You can all add a message for your loved ones who visit your registry.
Checklist: You get a checklist by Target consisting of all the baby essentials divided into different categories. This ensures that you don’t skip any important item.
Gift Tracker: With this feature, you can keep an eye on which item has been purchased for you and by whom. You can also send a note to thank them for their gifts.
Cons Of The Target Baby Registry
The Target Baby Registry is one of the best baby registries out there. However, be aware that the welcome kit is only available if you go into the store to create your registry. Gifts also have to be returned in person, unlike Amazon, where you just print out a return tag and send it back with credit added directly to your account.
Buy Buy Baby Registry: Best Baby Registry For Large Purchases
Buy Buy Baby specifically offers baby-related products. It has a huge collection which means you have a great variety of options. One of the things I love about Buy Buy Baby is their furniture. If you are specifically looking for furniture on your list, this is a great place to start. because you can see it in person before you purchase. However, this baby registry has more con than the others, so make sure to consider them before you make this your primary baby registry.
Perks And Benefits Of The Buy Buy Baby Baby Registry
Discounts: Buy Buy Baby offers a 15% completion discount which means you will get 15% off on the items left on your registry list a few weeks before your baby is expected to arrive. And you can also use your 20% Bed Bath & Beyond coupons at the Buy Buy Baby registry.
Free Shipping: Buy Buy baby registry has one of the best free shipping policies. Once a purchase of $1500 or above has been made on your registry, you can avail unlimited free shipping throughout the first year after the arrival of your baby.
Free Samples: You get freebies and coupons from buy buy Baby once you register with them but they aren’t available online which means you have to visit the store to get your freebies.
Checklist: With the Buy Buy Baby checklist, you can make it easy for yourself to keep track of which items you want and if you are missing any baby essentials.
Gift Tracking: You can track who purchased a particular item from your list and send him/her a thank you note.
Cons Of The Buy Buy Baby Registry
First of all, it doesn’t offer a universal registry, which means you can only purchase items that are available at Buy Buy Baby. Secondly, there is no group gifting option, so your friends will have to manage on their own if they want to purchase a single item collectively. Lastly, the goody bag and coupons are not available online, so you have to visit the store if you want to avail them
I’ll be honest, there is no hard and fast rule for when you should set up a baby registry. You can create it anytime you want or whenever you have enough time.
But, don’t be too late because you would want to add all the baby essentials to the list and you might not be able to think of them at once.
Some people start creating the list as early as the end of the first trimester and there is nothing wrong with it, but I suggest the best time is by the mid of your second trimester. Now, why do I recommend this?
Because you will know the gender of your baby by that time, that is of course if you want to know it in advance, and still have plenty of time to think of all the essential items. Not to mention, this way your friends and family will also have enough time to pick the gift they want to give you.
Is A Baby Registry Free?
Yes, creating a baby registry is absolutely free. Companies know that when you have a baby, you need a lot of gear. They are happy to compete for your money by making it easy for you to share your needs and wants with your friends and family who are waiting to spoil you!
What Should You Include On A Baby Registry?
Luckily baby registries have checklists to help you figure out what items to add to your list. However, you want to make sure that you include items you will need in the first year of parenting.
These items should help you get the stuff you need to provide a safe sleeping place for your baby, to support you either breastfeeding or bottle-feeding or both, help you keep your baby dressed and stylish in the first year, and often, help you get the first toys and library items for your baby. You can see our favorite baby registry must-haves here.
Choosing Between Amazon vs Target Baby Registry
By far, the best two baby registries out there are Amazon and Target. When it comes to choosing between Amazon and Target, it’s important to ask these questions.
Are you already a Prime member? If so, I recommend Amazon. If not, go with Target.
Are registering for a lot of clothes? Then you need to ask yourself if you need to see them in person or not. Target makes it easier to find (and see) the cutest clothes, but Amazon has a larger selection.
Will you be buying a lot of items personally from your registry? Both comapnies offer a discount to you for purchasing off your own registry. Remember, this is a one-time use offer, so put all your items in one order and plan for this purchase. However, Amazon gives much more flexibility as to when you can redeem this coupon. Amazon also offers a higher discount, so you will save more money gearing up with this registry.
When it comes to the welcome box, Target’s welcome box is definitely superior to Amazon’s. However, you have to go in in person to get it, which is a bit less convenient.
Overall, my pick is always Amazon because of convience, savings, and ease of use.