Deciding Where to Register for Baby
When we found out we were expecting lil T, it wasn't exactly on the life schedule and thus, I wasn't quite into it. Which meant I left registering until the last hour and didn't want to roll up into the big box baby stores with my scanner gun. I also really like to research products before I buy and know I'm getting the best deal. So. The internets! And even better - my most favorite part of the buying internets - Amazon! Here are the tips I gleaned in the process - feel free to leave your wisdom in the comments!
1. Amazon's Registry Button - Click here and you'll follow a link to add Amazon's registry button to your browser. This was the perfect reason for me to use Amazon as my home base of registering. I was able to add products from big box stores all the way down to my favorite newborn (and beyond!) baby carrier, the Solly Wrap. It is similar to Pinterest's 'pin it' button, but also allows you to add quantities and notes. I used the notes section to let people know which items I felt were must haves, which catered to Dad and colors of items I was wishing for etc.
Overall, really helpful and kept me from having to have too many registries, because while I liked an item or two at Pottery Barn Kids, I didn't want to send people on a goose chase nor did I want to be the girl with 6 registries. Returns were easy through amazon, they also have Prime for Mommas which, I understand, can be super helpful in the days of diaper subscriptions. Other bonus is that if someone isn't comfy using amazon, they can always grab a gift card for you at the nearest gift card kiosk and those are little gems when you're home hibernating with a newborn and you really need this baby widget. Overall Amazon's baby registry fielded next to zero complaints from my gift buyers, was super easy to evaluate products based on reviews and provided a little guide to things for baby I was maybe forgetting. And hello, I could add items from Ikea.
2. Target - At first, I was just going to add Target items to my Amazon registry, and while I did, they often run out of items, only have them in store or online and it was becoming a little tricky. In the end I folded and added a Target registry for a few reasons. Coupons. Hey. Registering at Target saved me at least $10 in coupons for nursing supplies I needed in the early days. A whole little welcome care package just like when you register for you wedding, full of affiliate promotions. Free snapfish photos, anyone?
Registering also allows you to make returns that didn't have receipts without it counting against their store policy annual limit of $45 or something equally crazy. This helped me a LOT when folks gave us repeat onesises and I didn't know where they came from. I would head into Target with my bag of unidentified returnables, they would scan them to see if they were Target goods and for the ones that were, they gladly returned them with no receipt for store credit or cash. Hey. Can't beat that. They were also great about exchanges. But the registering piece allows them to scan your registry each time and gives you more returns leeway. If you know what I'm talking about, this'll be useful to you - if you don't, you may be my only friend who doesn't often return items to Target...
And hey - who doesn't go to Target? Makes shopping for the next baby shower easy on your busy Mommy friends. Now if only Target would update their registry system so it was easier to use and consistently available... Again, if you've had this problem, you know what's up!
3. BuyBuyBaby - Uhm, hey. This place calls for a nap after each visit because it's so overly visually stimulating, but when I want to get my hands on a product, they almost always have it. They also have great coupons as they're owned by Bed, Bath and Beyond - so registering gets you a coupon, via mail, email and test, as does having everyone you know sign up for coupons. Got all of Truman's cloth diaper collection for much cheaper than sticker price thanks to those bad boys I had sent to my sister, mother and parents-in-law.
Their site also has a few great options for comparing goods like strollers (eek!) and carseats that I found helpful. Reviews here are also very thought out, and thus very useful.
Pros to shopping or registering in-store? They have ALL the strollers are car seats. You can drive them, touch them, fold them up, test em out and it's really worth getting your hands on the goods that cost the mostest. Especially when you have a long-legged, tall husband who needs to be able to reach the stroller to help push. I was planning on a $400+ stroller due to good online reviews, but thanks to a friend tip and a trip to BBB, I found a much smaller, easier to use and better-for-us stroller that I got for a bit under $150. Not sure if I would have the stalker-salesperson stamina to register in-store, but hey - to each their own!
4. Babies R Us - This place. Oh my. Can't say I enjoyed any experience there, but they were helpful when I needed to return items, always issuing a store credit without me having a registry there. Lines are long, high school boys they employ aren't helpful, and our store is a literal dirty train wreck each time I go. They do carry a few items I needed and they have a giant breastfeeding section that comes in handy when I can't pop in BBB's store in Lex. But overall, I tried to avoid the timesuck this place is.
There you have it. All my unsolicited advice on how we chose to register where and why. I still think Amazon's registry is the bee's knees and loved that it allowed me to incorporate so many different stores. Bonus: 9 out of 10 Americans can use it. Seems logical to me, anyway.