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How To Save Money on Things You Already Buy - Alice.com Review

Updated on September 29, 2009

Everyone these days is looking for a way to cut back their spending.  "Every dollar counts" as the old saying goes... I read an article a while back on CNET about a new site that promised to save me money on the every day purchases I make.  I was pretty skeptical at first, but a couple weeks ago I decided to dig up that link and see what they were talking about...

The site is Alice.com - what it claims to be is your source for common household goods you would normally have to go to the local store and buy every day, oh and by the way its prices are supposed to be cheaper too.  How does this happen?  It's because Alice.com connects you directly to the manufacturers and eliminates the retail middle man.  Sound too good to be true?  Well, I decided to check it out...

What I Was Looking For...

I approached Alice as a skeptical consumer. I had some very important questions before I even considered using the service. Number 1 was price. Yeah that's great if the products are all $0.50 cheaper than in the brick and mortar store, but if it's going to cost me $5.99 or more to get the good shipped to me that will eat into the savings pretty quickly. Alice.com addressed that problem though: Shipping is FREE. Always. Now that's appealing.

This piqued my interest, so I decided to take a look at per product pricing. Who cares if shipping is free if they charge a dollar extra on every product? To my surprise, this wasn't the case. I took some old grocery receipts from my local shopping experience and compared prices to Alice.com. Some items were cheaper, some weren't. I think the most I saved was about a buck on Tide liquid detergent. For the most part products were on the order of $0.10 to $0.20 cheaper. Doesn't sound like much, but add it up over time and over a bunch of products... Every dollar counts. Just a word of caution, some prices were higher... I like to get my fix on Nabisco's Wheat Thins... I was able to purchase the family size at my local store on sale, for cheaper than the regular size available on Alice. You might have to do some comparison shopping to see what your threshold is for certain products.

Also - there's no membership fee like popular brick and mortar stores that offer deep discounts on bulk purchases of products.  Also, you don't have to buy products in bulk.  You can buy them one at a time.  Signing up at Alice.com is free.

OK - so pricing was pretty good... but what kind of products do they have? Their specialty is consumer products that are non-perishable. Don't expect to be finding milk, eggs, and bread on here. We're talking boxed food: cereal, breakfast bars, snacks, etc... we're also talking about common household cleaning supplies: paper towels, toilet paper, glass cleaner, toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, and razors. There's a lot more, but I think you get the picture. Now here's what I thought was really impressive. They weren't pushing store brand products, actually quite the contrary... Every product in there was name brand - Nabisco, Suave, Dove, Advil, Kellogg's, Quaker, and on and on...

So I took the bait...

So I shopped around a bit on there, and I liked what I saw as far as products and prices. One feature I found appealing was that the interface was very clean and intuitive. I liked that you could select your preferred products and store them... then when you want to buy them in the future, you simply click and drag them into your shopping cart on the page. Clean and simple. I attached a screenshot of what the products page looked like so you can check it out. It also allows you to schedule reminders for products, and track your budget spending on various categories. All in all the experience was a pleasure.

I made my first purchase:

Qty Item                             Price  Coupon Total
 1  Liquid Detergent Tide Detergent  $8.06  $0.35  $7.71
 1  Body Wash Suave Body Wash        $1.97  $0.50  $1.47
 1  Toothpaste Colgate Anticavity    $3.14  $0.75  $2.39
 1  Men's Deodorant Speed Stick      $3.87  $1.00  $2.87
 1  Suave Shampoo + Conditioner      $2.06  $0.50  $1.56

Subtotal:    $19.10
- Coupons:  -$ 3.10
+ Tax:       $ 0.96
--------------------
TOTAL:       $16.96

Not bad for products that I would normally have purchased at the store for a bit more than that... I didn't even go bargain shopping - I wanted to know what it would cost for me to buy the name brand products that I would normally buy. You could also shop by the best deals... Today I see on there: a 10-pack of Bic shavers, $1.05; Men's Speed Stick, $0.86; TAG Body Spray, $2.29. All significantly discounted.

So about shipping... it's free. Sometimes free means Slooooooow. That's not good - if I'm buying toilet paper, it's because I need it soon. I don't want to be borrowing paper out of the printer to take care of business. Not to worry, Alice.com says it should get there in 2-3 days. It got to me in 2, very well packaged, everything sealed. Even items that could be opened and re-sealed had an extra piece of security tape on the lids to show that they are a fully unused product. I liked that extra assurance.

What's the Catch?

Well, that's what I was looking for... how could a company possibly be profitable with bargain basement prices and FREE shipping? I found it as I was checking out... They have a minimum order policy. Each purchase needs to contain 6 items or more. You'll notice my first purchase was only 5 items as I tried it out. They'll let you slide the first time, but every time thereafter you need to hit the minimum purchase quantity threshold of 6 items.

Really, when you think about it... it's not that big of a deal. For me, a single guy living on his own, I find it a bit tougher to hit the 6 item mark, but with a little bit of foresight it shouldn't be a problem. I like the convenience of just jumping on the internet and having this stuff show up on my front door. No need for a late night run to CVS because I ran out of shaving cream and I forgot to buy it at the grocery store last week... I can just jump on the internet when I start running low and drop it into my cart. It's a pretty quick and painless.

The Pitch

Overall the experience was positive. I'd recommend you try it out, at least once. If you live in New York, California, or some other high cost of living part of the country, you'd be doing yourself a disservice if you didn't check it out. You don't have much to lose except for a few minutes of your time while you explore their site: Alice.com. If you sign up via this link, you'll get $10 off your first $50 spent on the site. Pretty good deal if you ask me.

Full Disclosure: In case you were wondering if I get paid for this review... the answer is not directly. By signing up via my link, you'll get a few bucks and I'll get a few bucks - it's a win-win my opinion. If you really don't want me to get a couple bucks, and you don't care about the $10 that they're willing to give you for being referred, you can just type alice.com in your browser... it's free money though, so why would you?

Happy shopping!

Comments

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    • profile image

      Drema 

      6 years ago

      Well, the bubble has burst, check out the new shipping policy, you have to spend $40.00 to get free shipping. If not then it will be $6.99. The sad part is they made the announcement via email "effective today", would have been nice to have given us a week or so advance notice.

      What built the company for me, is pushing me to search for other venues.

    • profile image

      P. 

      7 years ago

      This a a supplement to my June 7 review. I regards to Alice.com, my experience was still a very positive one. For those who utilize Alice.com as their source for Robbie's Naturals products, please be aware that more than just the label has been changed.

      What’s in a name? Apparently, not much, as far as integrity is concerned. I have purchased Robbie's Natural products for well over a decade. When the corporation was sold in 2010, a representative from the company which acquired it, made it clear to me that the formulas would not change, only the label. It seems this was a misrepresentation or they have had second thoughts. Their condiments, such as their Barbecue sauce, once the finest such product on the market in my view, has been compromised. Along with its superior taste, its virtue was in being one of the only such sauces to be sweetened only with fruit juice. Now the company controlling the manufacturing and distribution of Robbie's Naturals, has decided to adulterate the product using inferior fructose and honey where simple fruit juice used to be. Other products have had refined sugar added to their recipes.

      I fully understand that companies must attempt to remain competitive, especially during the current economic climate. Trying to achieve such cost cutting by offering a second-rate product, while believing a loyal customer base can be retained is sheer fallacy.

      I only wished I had known of their flimflam artistry prior to purchasing $20.00 worth of their products. I noticed the company’s website has been off-line for quite some time. Perhaps it is a sign along with an age-old business example of cause and effect. In this particular case, the buyer as well as the seller should beware.

    • profile image

      P. 

      7 years ago

      I had my first order from Alice.com delivered recently. It consisted mainly of hard to find items from Robbie's Naturals. The prices were about what I would pay at any natural foods store (if they actually carried the items). The free shipping is great and when one factors in the gasoline consumed while going to and fro, it's definitely a savings. The order was delivered promptly, everything was packed well and the complete order was delivered.

      A word of caution. During the hotter months of the year be careful ordering any products which could be affected by the heat, either during the shipping or the storage process.

      Also, I was under the impression that first time Alice customers aren't required to order a minimum of six items during their initial order. The site required I do so, nevertheless. My online total price was correct but when I received the order, I noticed Alice had given me those additional two items at no charge. This was a savings of $5.00 on a $25.00 order. I am certainly delighted but a bit confused about the reason for the credit. I am aware of a $10.00 credit when spending $50.00 or more.

      I am impressed with Alice.com so far and will order from them again. I just wish they had a greater variety of natural, organic and health food items.

    • profile imageAUTHOR

      jm0119 

      8 years ago

      I'm glad you found my alice.com review helpful. I have continued using the service since my original posting of the article, and I still like it.

      My best advice to folks is to do their homework - if prices are what matter most, you can find yourself some good deals on here, but as with any anything, some products can be had for cheaper at the local grocery store when they're on sale. Other products on Alice.com, their prices can't be beat, and the instant coupons save you the time of clipping them from your newspaper.

      If you're simply looking for a convenient shopping experience and want a very simple tool for being better organized - look no further because this is the place to be.

      Hope your experience was as good as mine! Let me know how it goes! :)

    • fastfreta profile image

      Alfreta Sailor 

      8 years ago from Southern California

      I just found your article on internet from a site called MyPoints, how cool. After contemplating signing up for this Alice site, I wanted to see what others were saying about it and surprise, surprise your link was there. Very good, I think that I will try it, based on your recommendation.

    • profile image

      Rebecca 

      9 years ago

      Thanks for this great review - I'm thrilled you liked the service and appreciate you spreading the word :)

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