Amazon vs. Jet: Battle for the best bargains

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- There's a new kid on the block in the world of online retailers.

Jet debuted in late July and could give Amazon a run for its money.

"It's a subscription service, it's really trying to compete with Amazon Prime," said Kyle James, who runs the savings site Rather Be Shopping.

Jet has a simple look. Users can shop by category or enter a product name.

It is offering a three-month free trial. Users will not be auto-enrolled at the end of the trial period.

Membership costs $49.99 a year and includes free shipping on items over $35 along with free returns.

James did a head-to-head comparison of Jet and Amazon and said Jet's biggest advantage is what is referred to as the Smart Cart. Essentially, buying similar items together gives customers a better deal.

"Kind of a good example is okay, if you add peanut butter to your shopping cart, you're going to get a better price on jelly," James said. "If you add a golf bag to your cart, you're going to get a better price on golf balls."

Jet uses customers' locations to find warehouses or distributors where the like items can be packed together, and those savings are passed on to the customer.

Another way to save at Jet is an option to waive free returns.

"It'll typically save, like in a $400 TV, $25 to $50, and that almost every time, that's going to get you underneath the Amazon price," James said.

Amazon prices are available for comparison when an item is selected, despite the fact that Jet officials have said they are not trying to directly compete with the online retail giant.

Despite it's pros, experts including James said Jet's prices are not always lower than Amazon's. Plus, Amazon offers millions of more items, not to mention two-day free shipping for Prime members and extras like free e-books, music and video streaming.

James said another knock for Jet is that because it's so new, there aren't many customer reviews for its products.

Either way, James said Jet offers another option for savvy shoppers.

"I think competition is always a good thing for consumers, and it's going to make Amazon keep their prices low, hold their feet to the fire as far as the services they offer."

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