Having a baby is one of the most exciting things to happen in the life of an adult. It can also be very overwhelming. Parenting is hard work, and if you’re heading into parenthood for the first time it’s common to be unsure about everything from nutrition, to supplies, to finances.
Babies can also be expensive. So, creating a baby registry for your baby at local and online stores for some of the things you’ll need can help ease the financial burden of parenting. It also gives loved ones some great ideas for helping you bring your new bundle of joy into the world.
Below we’ll talk about some of the more popular stores – both online stores and brick-and-mortar stores – that have baby registry services, and how you can know what items you should register for when you’re expecting that beautiful family addition.
Every store’s registry has its benefits. So, I’ll go into detail below regarding those in order to give you the information you need to decide which registries to sign up with. Some people sign up for just one, others sign up for multiple registries. Check out the details and benefits of each to see which baby registry programs might be best for you.
Amazon has a pretty comprehensive baby registry program with many benefits. Here is a list of the program’s features.
Extra Discounts and other Benefits for Prime Members
If you are (or become) an Amazon Prime member before – or when – you create your registry, you will be eligible for an extra 15% completion discount on qualifying purchases. A completion discount applies when you purchase the remaining items on your baby registry list after everyone is done giving gifts.
If you’re not a Prime member, you’ll still be offered a 10% completion discount.
You’ll also be eligible for rotating offers such as their Welcome Box, free parenting e-book, discounts from Tiny Prints, maternity clothes, product savings and more.
Bonus: as an Amazon Prime Member you’ll get free 2-day shipping on all orders and free access to Amazon Prime Video.
Don’t want to become an Amazon Prime Member? That’s okay: you’ll still get a 10% discount on almost any item you purchase as a baby registry member.
Universal Registry Management
You can create, add to or edit your baby registry list at any time from any device. This is a convenient feature that makes it easy to manage your registry with Amazon.
The Largest Selection
Amazon has just about the largest selection of any store around, and their prices are lower on many, many items. When we’re price shopping for stuff, Amazon is our first stop, and then we compare prices from there, but we almost always end up buying from Amazon.
With over 270,000 baby items to choose from at this writing, you’ll almost certainly find what you need for your baby on Amazon.
Okay, this is a really cool feature. If you can’t find a particular item for you or your baby on Amazon, you can use their feature, Amazon Assistant, to add items from other shopping sites onto your Amazon baby registry.
A Great Return Policy
If you’re not satisfied with a gift you get from your Amazon Baby Registry, you have up to 90 days to return most items for a full refund. This feature will help ensure that none of your gifts sit in a closet or drawer unused.
Baby Registry Sweepstakes and Other Prizes
Amazon’s baby registry program often includes other prize offerings for expectant parents as well. As of this writing, new registry members are entered into a sweepstakes for a $2475 giveaway, compliments of Graco baby items.
These additional chances to win prizes can give you opportunities to better prepare for all you need for your baby.
All in all, there’s a lot of great things about the Amazon Baby Registry program. One down side is that you can’t just go into the store and see, feel and examine things, and you can’t buy and bring them home the same day, and neither can your gift-giving friends and relatives.
Also, technology might be a problem for older folks who prefer the old-fashioned way of shopping. But for the majority of users Amazon makes buying baby gifts for registry members super easy, and it makes creating a baby registry well worth the effort for parents.
Target has another popular baby registry program. With over 1800 brick-and-mortar store locations in the United States alone, your gift givers are bound to find a Target store near them as they shop for gifts for your baby.
So, what does the Target Baby Registry program have to offer? Lots. Let’s check out the benefits.
Both Online and In-Store Registry
Because Target has hundreds of store locations throughout the U.S., you can register online or you can head into a store location where you can get a better, more thorough look at the products they have available.
While the online store will definitely have more products for you to choose from, registering for your baby directly in a store location will help you get a better idea of the quality of certain brands, colors, etc.
I don’t know about you, but I always get the warm fuzzies when I wander through the baby department at Target or other stores, and those same warm fuzzies don’t come when I’m shopping for baby products online.
If you do have to shop online, use this link to get free shipping on any orders over $35.
A Welcome Kit
Everyone who creates a baby registry at Target gets a Welcome Kit worth $50. The Target Baby Registry Welcome Kit is loaded with sample items and coupons that will help you get your baby off to the right start and help you save money at the same time.
A Completion Discount
Like Amazon, Target offers a completion discount when you purchase the remaining items on your baby registry list after your due date passes. The Target completion discount is 15% across the board, however there are some limits to this discount.
First, it can only be used for one in-store purchase and one online purchase, meaning you only have two “trips” to complete your baby registry purchases. Also, there are certain brands that the discount will not apply to, including gaming brands such as Xbox One, Nintendo, Apple, Nikon or Canon cameras, Bose products, Vitamix, electronics items and Lego items.
Who knew people put that stuff on a baby registry, but apparently, it happens. Or else Target is just thinking ahead to people who might use a baby registry program for these types of items. Also, you can’t use your discount to purchase gift cards.
Target works to make baby registry item returns easy by giving registry members up to one year to return “most new, unopened items” at a local Target store.
I have read online that people sometimes have trouble returning items to local store locations if those items were purchased online. That may or may not be the case with your local Target store.
As with Amazon, your online Target registry can include items from many other websites. This is a great feature for online shoppers if you have items you want that aren’t sold at Target.
Group Gift Giving Feature
Target makes it easy for people to go in together on larger gift items on your baby registry. Let’s say that Aunt Susie, Cousin Mary, Cousin Jenna and Grandma Jane want to go together to purchase a car seat for you, and that car seat costs $100.
Someone in the group starts a group gift purchase. They’ll actually be sending you a gift card that includes a note saying “To be used toward the purchase of X brand car seat”, but you do have the option to purchase other things with it as well.
Each member in the group gifting group will receive an individual link where they can go and contribute a specified dollar amount toward the e-gift card. The e-gift card is then sent to you and you can purchase the item specified or a different item.
Personalized Page Features
Target’s Baby Registry program comes with the ability to personalize your online registry with features such as custom URL and photos.
This is a fun little benefit that can help people have an insight into you and your journey into parenthood.
Baby Registry Checklist
Target helps you get an idea of what items to include on your registry with their checklist. Super helpful for first time parents.
The Target Gift Tracking feature helps you see who has given you what, along with who you’ve already thanked and who you haven’t. This feature requires some input from you as the recipient, but it does provide you with an easy, online place to keep track of thank you notes sent.
As with Amazon, there’s a lot to love about the Target Baby Registry program. In my research, I found little in the way of negatives other than the fact that online purchases can sometimes be cumbersome to return at store locations.
The Baby Registry doesn’t seem to have all of the features that the registries at Amazon and Target have, but there’s still a lot to love about registering for your baby at Walmart. Here are some of the benefits of Walmart’s Baby Registry program.
A Welcome Box for All Registrants
All who register for Walmart’s Baby Registry program get a free Welcome Box. The site doesn’t share a lot about what their Welcome Box contains; it simply says it will include product samples for each stage of your baby’s development, and that the boxes are available only while supplies last.
I’ve done a good bit of research about this program over the years however, and I’ve never headed onto the site without the offer for a Welcome Box being in place, but that could change if supplies do run out according to the Walmart website.
The Walmart App
As with most stores these days, Walmart has a downloadable app that will help you easily track your baby registry progress from your smartphone or other device. Available for both Android and Apple.
Price Match Guarantee
Walmart will price match baby items if you find a lower price from certain retailers, but not all retailers. Many of the biggest retailers were on the list of stores they’d match prices from, including Amazon, Target, JC Penney, Kohl’s Babies R Us and more.
There are other stipulations too with the price match guarantee, which can be found on their baby registry website.
It’s always free to return a baby registry item you’ve gotten from Walmart as long as you return it within the timeframe specified on their website, which can vary according to the product.
As I perused the website’s return policy, they talked about some items having a 15-day return policy, others having a 30-day return policy and others having a 90-day return policy. Check out their returns web page to find out more information on how long you have to return specific items.
Note: If you have an item on your online baby registry that was not fulfilled and shipped from Walmart but instead from an outside company, you will have to return it directly to that outside company, and likely at your own cost.
We learned this the hard way over the holidays when my son bought an item as a Christmas gift that wasn’t what we expected. We contacted Walmart, who told us that because the product was fulfilled by an outside vendor we’d have to go directly to them.
We did so, but they refused to help us, so my son was out his cash. On the flip side, I ordered choker necklaces for my three daughters that were purchased through Walmart online but fulfilled by an outside vendor as well.
Not only did the items arrive, and in great condition, the company sent us an extra package of choker necklaces as a free gift too!
The takeaway here is that as you are registering online for your Walmart Baby Registry, pay close attention to the fine print as you search. If you’re looking at something not sold and shipped by Walmart, there will be a little blurb that says “Sold and shipped by…” stating the name of the company.
If there’s no such blurb, the item is likely sold and shipped directly from Walmart. This is something you may want to keep in mind as you choose the items for your online registry.
Walmart’s Baby Registry program may not have a lot of bells and whistles, but it’s a great basic registry that can fill most all of your baby’s needs.
And because there is a Walmart in most every city these days (over 4,000 in the United States currently), gift givers from all over the country shouldn’t have to travel too far to purchase a gift from your registry list if they’d rather buy in person than online.
4. Buy Buy Baby
Buy Buy Baby stores aren’t as expansively located as Target and Walmart stores are, but according to their website they do have locations in 38 U.S states.
And luckily, today’s world of online shopping means you can register for your baby at Buy Buy Baby even if there’s not a brick-and-mortar location near you.
Here are some of the best features and benefits of registering your baby with Buy Buy Baby.
Free Gift Bag
Buy Buy Baby gives a Goody Bag to all baby registry members. The bag includes free samples and coupons; however, you do need to go to an actual store location to pick up your Goody Bag. They won’t send it out if you’re registering online and there are no store locations near you.
Build Your Registry with Friends
I thought this was kind of a fun feature: Buy Buy Baby has an online tool allowing you to ask friends and loved ones help you build your registry list. The “Ask a Friend” and “Copy a Friend” registry tools help you work together with loved ones to build the perfect registry list for your baby.
Another cool feature of the Buy Buy Baby Registry program is that you can get rewarded for referring friends and family members who are expecting a baby to sign up for their own registry at Buy Buy Baby.
If you refer a loved one, and they sign up for their own registry, you as the referring party get a coupon worth $25 off of any $100 purchase at Buy Buy Baby.
The referral program notes did say, however, that the purchase using the coupon has to be an in-store purchase, so beware of that stipulation.
Price Match Guarantee
Like the other stores featured here, Buy Buy Baby’s registry program has a price match guarantee. There are some features to the price match guarantee that you should know about, including:
- The competitor’s product must be identical to the Buy Buy Baby product.
- They match prices for direct competitors only. In other words, they’ll price match on an Amazon product that comes directly from Amazon, but not on one that comes from a third-party supplier.
- The item cannot be a clearance or closeout item.
- Buy Buy Baby reserves the right to limit quantities on a price match.
All things to be aware of before you ask for your price match on an item you found cheaper somewhere else.
Hassle Free Returns
Buy Buy Baby promises hassle free returns on their website, although I couldn’t find anything stating exactly what that meant.
Complimentary Registry Announcement Cards
When you register in-store at Buy Buy Baby, you’ll get a complimentary package of announcement cards to mail to family and friends, letting them know you’re registered at Buy Buy Baby. I thought this was a nice little touch.
Lots to love about registering at Buy Buy Baby. The only downside I can see is the lack of store locations available in the U.S. compared to Walmart or Target, however if most of your friends and family members live in a city with Buy Buy Baby locations, this won’t be an issue.
5. Babies R Us
Like Buy Buy Baby, Babies R Us specializes in selling baby products. There are a lot of great features about their baby registry program as well. Here’s a list of some of the more enticing features.
The Endless Earnings Program
You know how when you shop at stores such as Target, you can use the RedCard to have Target give 5% to your favorite school?
Babies R Us has a similar type of program for parents who sign up for their baby registry program. When you sign up for their Rewards R Us program, and complete your baby registry with them, you can earn up to 5% back on the items friends and family members purchase off of your registry list.
You’ll earn 5% back on purchases up to $300, and 10% back on all purchases over $300. Note: the cash back rewards accumulate from registry items purchased at Toys R Us too.
The program rebate applies to any purchases made up to 30 days beyond your due date, and even purchases you make yourself from your registry list will qualify for the Endless Earnings rebate.
Note that your Endless Earnings rewards dollars won’t be given to you as cash, but instead as an e-gift card for any Babies R Us or Toys R Us purchase, but hey, it’s still free money.
One-on-One Registry Consultation
Another nice feature about the baby registry at Babies R Us is that you can make an appointment with an in-store registry consultant that will help you make your baby registry the best it can be. There’s no cost to you for this service.
Classes and Events for Pre- and Post-Natal
Babies R Us also holds classes for parents covering a wide variety of pregnancy and parenting topics. The classes are free of charge as well. Check your local store website for more information on class times and topics.
Like Amazon and Target, Babies R Us offers a discount on items you purchase to complete fulfillment of your baby registry list. You’ll get a full 15% off on items you buy yourself to complete your baby registry needs.
Babies R Us also offers price matching, a mobile app, and free shipping for online purchases of $29 or more. And their return policy states a “no questions asked, no hassles” policy on returns up to a year after purchase.
Lots to like here, and I love that you can choose items for your registry that are sold by Toys R Us as well.
6. Pottery Barn
If you’ve never perused the Pottery Barn Kids website, now is the perfect time. Although the items there tend to be at a higher price point, the products they sell are beyond cute.
When my kids were little I used to love to shop at Pottery Barn. Although we were (and still are) too frugal to pay full price for Pottery Barn items, I’d shop their clearance section regularly waiting for my wish list items to go on clearance so I could buy them at deeply discounted prices.
Pottery Barn has a limited number of stores in the U.S. and around the world, but they do have an e-commerce store as well that can be used to create your baby registry, or you can stop in at a store location, or call their customer service line to register for your baby as well.
Here are some of the other features of Pottery Barn’s baby registry.
Complimentary Design Services
Pottery Barn Design Studio Specialists will help you create the perfect nursery for your little one’s arrival, free of charge. You can visit a store in person, call their customer service number or look online for help in creating your nursery.
A Completion Discount
Pottery Barn’s completion discount is the highest of those I’ve seen for baby registries; they offer a 20% discount on any item you purchase yourself for up to six months after your event date, provided you had those items listed on your registry.
Thank You Note Organizer
The Pottery Barn baby registry has a “thank you note organizer” that helps you keep track of who you’ve sent notes out to and who still needs a thank you note. This is a great feature that helps parents-to-be manage their time well.
Hassle Free Exchanges and Returns
The company also promises hassle free exchanges and returns on any items purchased from your baby registry list.
Although the store locations are limited and the prices tend to be on the high side compared to the other stores we’ve listed here, Pottery Barn does have some adorable baby and kid items. Their “grown up” store items are nice as well.
7. Baby List
The Baby List baby registry is an entirely different kind of baby registry than the others we’ve featured here. Baby List isn’t a store, but instead it’s a baby registry service of sorts.
This unique and exciting online baby registry was founded in 2011, and it’s grown exponentially since then. In fact, as of 2017 over 5 million gifts were given via Baby List baby registries. Here are some of the features about Baby List you might like.
Any Item from Any Store
Since Baby List is a registry service instead of an actual store, you can put items from any store, anywhere on your Baby list registry. Just add the items you find at online stores to your Baby List registry and gift givers can purchase them for you.
Other Meaningful Gift Options
One feature that really stood out to me is the ability to add service gifts onto your Baby List registry. You can include gift options such as:
- Meals delivered
- Service-oriented gifts such as pet or babysitting an older child
- Diaper service plans
Any new parent will tell you that gifts such as these are worth their weight in gold. It’s so nice to have people bringing meals, helping with housework and helping care for kids and pets as you and your newborn get settled in.
Hello Baby Sample Box
Baby List is currently offering a sample box for expectant parents that contains up to $160 in samples and coupons for your baby and parent needs. Note that this offer is labeled “while supplies last”.
For the reason of the service gift options alone I would totally register on Baby List if I was expecting.
That’s our summary of some of the more popular baby registry sites. Now onto some information about what types of products you should register for on your baby registry.
What Should I Register for When I’m Expecting a Baby?
Thinking about what you and your baby might need before he or she even arrives can be overwhelming. Here is a short list of things you may want to consider putting on your baby registry list to help you get prepared for parenthood.
Large Ticket Items
Aside from the hospital bill, large ticket items such as cribs can be some of the most expensive things you’ll need to shell out for to prepare for your new baby. That’s why it’s smart to consider putting items on your registry such as:
- Your crib choice
- A bassinet
- A car seat
- A stroller or stroller/car seat combo
- A playpen
- A high chair
Or other expensive items you may need or want. Although some people get nervous about asking for expensive items on their registry, many gift givers with smaller budgets are happy to go in with other people to buy a large ticket item together.
Onesies, receiving blankets, bibs and one-piece pajama-type outfits come to mind here. Between spitting up and other bodily functions, babies tend to need clothing changes a lot, especially in those first few months.
Put plenty of them on your registry list – and in a variety of sizes so that you’ll be covered for several months as far as clothing needs go.
Other Convenience Items
I’m thinking specifically of things like hooded bath towels, humidifiers, baby thermometers, nasal aspirators, pacifiers and such.
You may be surprised at how handy these types of items come in as you care for your newborn.
Beware of Asking for Diapers, Wipes and Formula
I caution against asking for disposal diapers, wipes and formula in large quantities on your registry. Although these are great items to have, some babies have sensitivities or allergies to certain brands of these items.
If you have a closet full of a particular brand of wipes and find out that your baby can’t tolerate one or more of the ingredients in that brand, you could be out a lot of money.
Bringing a new baby home is one of the most exciting times in a person’s life. Make sure you’re prepared by creating one or more baby registries that can help ensure you have everything you need for your new bundle(s) of joy.