Congratulations! You’re pregnant!
Now you’re wondering this:
Where should I open my baby registry?
There are a few different places you might be considering.
They probably include the obvious ones: Babies “R” Us, Buy Buy Baby and Target.
When I was pregnant, I spent so much time looking at the different registry programs to find one I liked. I didn’t want to jump straight to Babies “R” Us like some people suggested I do.
Since I took so much time figuring it out, I thought that I might as well summarize my research for everyone else’s benefit!
Today I’ll tell you about the 5 main baby registry programs, and which one I recommend you use!
Where Should I Open My Baby Registry?
I personally went with Amazon for my registry.
Not only did they have the widest selection, but being a member of Amazon Mom, I got a 15% completion discount. I’d personally recommend Amazon for your registry, but some of the other options are good, too.
I went through and listed the benefits, perks and completion bonuses of the 5 most popular baby registries: Amazon, Babies r Us, Buy Buy Baby, Target and Pottery Barn.
Of all of them, the only one I couldn’t really recommend was Target, and you’ll see why.
#1 – Amazon Baby Registry
Amazon has a great baby registry that’s becoming more popular by the year. And it’s my personal favorite.
The biggest benefit is that they give 10% off select items in your registry, or 15% if you’re a member of Amazon Mom (which is a great service, especially for diaper shopping).
The way the completion discount works is this: select items (not everything, but most) purchased within 30 days of the baby’s due date for up to $5000 worth of products. This is pretty significant; if you have $2000 worth of products, you’ll save $200 ($300 as an Amazon Mom member) right off the top, and that’s not even including they’re regular sales and discounts on baby stuff.
You can add products from any site, not just Amazon, so it makes for a great all-in-one registry compared to other places. So, for example, if you find something on the Babies r’ Us site that you want, you can simply add it to your Amazon Baby registry with the click of a button. Easy peasy.
Another reason I liked Amazon Baby is that the prices on Amazon tend to be cheaper compared to other places. Amazon is pretty great that way. If you combine the cheap prices, the 10-15% discount and free shipping with Prime, it can really add up and save a lot of money.
Amazon has an awesome return policy, too. Pretty much all baby gear is eligible for free returns for 90 days after purchase; we all know how fussy some babies can be, so this is excellent.
I was also pleased to find out that the gift-giver is not informed that the item was returned, so you could theoretically use the return credit on anything you wish.
Finally, Amazon has a huge selection of products. They carry virtually everything under the sun that you could possibly want on your registry list: baby bottles, car seats, strollers, baby monitors, etc. You can put together a complete registry easily.
The downside to Amazon’s baby registry? Some people prefer shopping from physical stores as opposed to online.
However, there is an option to print off the registry list, and if the shoppers are tech-savvy, they can log on and indicate which items they purchased.
All in all, this was my personal choice for my baby registry. They have a great little system and it’s hard to choose anything else over them!
How To Mark Items As Purchased (Even if Not From Amazon)
If you have family members that prefer not to buy things online (understandable, especially for those families with generational differences!) they can still buy from brick and mortar stores and mark it as purchased.
All they have to do is look at your registry, and then there’s a button you can click on each of the registered items to mark it as purchased.
Here’s how it works.
1. First, send them a link to your baby registry. If not possible, they can search for it on the registry website located here.
2. Then have them search for your registered name, like so:
3. Have them find your registry. It shouldn’t be too hard, even if you have a common name.
4. Scroll down and find the items purchased. They should see a button that says “Mark as purchased.” and should click it.
5. A box will pop up where they enter the information, including their name, where they purchased it, and their email.
6. They should go to their email and click the link Amazon sends them to confirm. That’s it!
It’s really easy to use, even for people who aren’t internet savvy. Worst case scenario, they could ask a friend or relative who is to go through the process and mark it as purchased for them.
- Completion discount: 10% off the top for qualifying items (15% for Amazon Mom members) 4 weeks before due date
- Return policy: 90 days on most items, free returns
- Selection: Excellent, they carry virtually everything
- Other perks: Universal system, can add items from any store.
How to Make a Registry on Amazon:
Just click on this link and click on the left where it says “Create a Registry“. It’s a really simple and short process!
2 – Babies R’ Us Registry
Babies R’ Us is one of the most well-known baby stores, and their registry is maybe the most popular of all.
They offer some nice perks; they’ll price match anything from other stores, and that includes Amazon, but it needs to be an in-store purchase.
They offer a 10% completion coupon that you receive in the mail. It can be used in-store or online, but the catch is that it can only be used for one single purchase. Not everyone is going to want to buy everything all at once, and it is only usable on items that you included on your registry.
You also get 5-10% back in the form of a gift card for any item purchased from the registry, whether you purchase it or a gift-giver does.
You get 5% on your first $300, and 10% on anything over $300; for example, if you spend $1000 you’ll get $85 back in giftcard form. You’ll receive the giftcard approximately 10 weeks after the baby’s due date.
The biggest perk of the Babies R’ Us registry is the generous return policy. They’ll accept returns (for store credit) up to 1 year after your due date for any item that’s on your registry. They definitely win out in this regard compared to the other registries.
On the downside, the selection isn’t nearly as good as Amazon and the prices tend to be more expensive overall. On the other hand, they will pricematch Amazon.com prices if they happen to carry the same items; you can only price match in-store, not online.
While not as good as Amazon’s registry in my opinion, it does work well for parents who don’t necessarily want to purchase online and feel more comfortable shopping in-store.
- Completion discount: 10% off the top for items in the registry; 1-shot coupon so must purchase all at once
- Return policy: 1-year return on items that are on your registry
- Selection: Not quite as good as Amazon, bigger selection online than in-store
- Other perks: 10-15% gift card cashback
#3 – Buy Buy Baby Registry
Buy Buy Baby is the baby offshoot of Bed Bath & Beyond; the benefit of this is that those 20% off BBB coupons that might stack up can be used at Buy Buy Baby, which might really come in handy. They will exclude certain high-end brands from the 20% off coupons, though.
Buy Buy Baby is known to have excellent customer service, and their selection tends to be better than Babies r Us, but not quite as good as Amazon’s.
They offer free in-store “consultations” with an expert, which sounds nice at first, but in practice it ends up being pretty annoying and pushy.
Judging by the experiences of a few moms, they end up walking around and adding things to your registry you didn’t ask for and overwhelming you with information on every item. It ends up being more of a hassle than a perk.
BBB offers a completion discount that seems to vary between 10-15%, and you should get it a few weeks before your due date. Pretty standard. Their return policy is pretty good, and they’ll accept returns up to 90 days after due date even if you don’t have a gift receipt.
The problem with Buy Buy Baby is that they aren’t nearly as widespread as Babies r Us, so if your gift-givers are going to be shopping in-store, this could really make the difference.
All in all, BBB’s registry isn’t bad, and most people seem to like it more than BRU’s. It really boils down to which is more convenient
- Completion discount: 10-15% coupon you’ll receive a few weeks before due date
- Return policy: 90 days, no receipt required as long as it’s on your registry
- Selection: Better than Babies r Us and Target
- Other perks: Bed Bath & Beyond coupons can be used, makes for a nice discount
#4 – Pottery Barn Kids Registry
Not exactly the most popular baby registry, but not for lack of perks, Pottery Barn has a nice baby registry that gets good reviews from parents who use it.
The main reason it’s not used as much is because Pottery Barn isn’t really known as a baby store, and their products do tend to be more expensive than the average store.
Pottery Barn’s registry has a 10% completion discount that runs for 6 months after your due date, and you can also add things to it during this time that will quality for the 10%. This also counts for non-baby items and furniture!
However, there’s a downside; the discount only begins after your due date, which isn’t very convenient, especially when most of the other registries begin their completion discount periods weeks before your due date. You also get 10% off any multiple-purchased items, such as blankets. It could be nice, especially if you’re having twins.
People can shop from your registry either online or in-store, but there aren’t nearly as many Pottery Barn locations as Babies r Us or Target.
While Pottery Barn tends to run more expensive, their products are very high quality. They also have some cute perks like the option to have items monogrammed or personalized with your baby’s name.
As far as return policies, Pottery Barn Kids doesn’t have the best. They offer a 30 day return policy for full refund, but all monogrammed/personalized items are final sale.
Finally, they have a monthly $1500 drawing every month for people registered with Pottery Barn. It’s not exactly something that should make the difference, but it’s a nice little bonus.
Pottery Barn Kids can be a nice baby registry option for some people, especially if they’re fans of Pottery Barn. While I couldn’t personally recommend it as the best baby registry option, it’s definitely a good one.
- Completion discount: 10% coupon usable for 6 months after due date, basically functions as 10% PB discount as it can be used on anything.
- Return policy: 30 days, anything personalized is final sale
- Other perks: Items can be personalized with names, can add anything to registry for 10% discount, $1500 monthly drawing
#5 – Target Baby Registry
The most convenient registry option: with over 1900 stores in the USA, almost everyone has a Target nearby.
The registries can also be accessed online, and it should be noted that their online selection tends to be much better than the in-store selection for baby items.
As far as a completion bonus, you get a 15% coupon in the mail 6 weeks before your due date for items not yet purchased. Like the Babies ‘r’ Us coupon, it’s only good for one day, but you can use it as many times that day as you want. I’m not sure how useful that is, but some might be able to take advantage of it.
The return policy isn’t great. You have 90 days to return new, unopened items if you have a gift receipt; Amazon & Babies r Us will accept opened and used items under most circumstances.
The big downside to Target is that their selection is much smaller than both Amazon and Target, especially in-store. Many people find it very frustrating, especially because the stock of various Targets tends to vary wildly; some stores will have certain things while others will have completely different things, and the online stock tends to be gone.
All in all, I can’t recommend Target’s registry. The frustrations greatly outweigh the conveniences, and it’s just not worth it.
- Completion discount: 15% off coupon 6 weeks before due date; must be used in 1 day
- Return policy: 1-year return on items that are on your registry
- Selection: Not great, especially compared to Amazon & Babies r Us
Conclusion: What Registry Do I Recommend?
If you’re a member of the Amazon Mom program, you get a 15% completion discount (otherwise it’s 10%, which is still good) and if you have Prime, shipping is free. They also have the widest selection when compared to the other options, but the only downside is that they don’t have physical stores so all of your gift-givers need to be okay with shopping online.
If you don’t want to limit your gift-givers to online shopping, the next best option is probably Babies r Us or Buy Buy Baby depending on whether or not you live in an area where shopping at either is more convenient.
Pottery Barn can be a nice choice if you like what they offer, but it is more expensive and less convenient. I couldn’t personally recommend Target, and it should really only be a last resort choice if none of the other ones work for you.
What Should I Put on My Registry?
Funny you should ask! I’ve written a thorough guide on what you should and shouldn’t have on your baby registry: you can find the guide right here. It tells you what’s necessary and what’s not so necessary.
Good luck! :)
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