AmazonSmile is a really exciting initiative that allows you to support your favourite charity every time you buy products on Amazon. The way it works is you simply login directly to smile.amazon.co.uk where you will find exactly the same shopping experience - the same low prices and selection as amazon.co.uk – and make purchases in the same way you normally would.

The difference is that Amazon will donate 0.5% of the net purchase price of each eligible purchase to charity. It really is an easy way to have a positive social impact and generate donations to charitable organisations that mean something to you, without it costing you, or the charity you choose to support, a penny.

Tell me about AmazonSmile on mobile?

Customers can now shop through AmazonSmile on Android phones in their Amazon Shopping app, which will make it more accessible and easier to use when shopping on the go. Once AmazonSmile is enabled in the app by the customer, every eligible purchase will automatically generate a 0.5% donation of the net purchase price to the charity of their choice.

How much has AmazonSmile raised already through this initiative?

AmazonSmile has already raised over $150m for charities worldwide and over £1.9m for UK charities since launch – as of July 2019. For example, Magic Breakfast, a charity that provides healthy breakfasts and expert support to schoolchildren who would otherwise be too hungry to learn, has received over £26,000 since the programme launched.

Magic Breakfast is one of the 16,000 charities enrolled in the AmazonSmile programme
Magic Breakfast is one of the 16,000 charities enrolled in the AmazonSmile programme

Why might I not have heard about AmazonSmile?

If that’s the case, we definitely want to change that! We love AmazonSmile as it gives our customers an easy way to support charitable organisations with every purchase they make – at no cost to the customer, or the charity selected. Amazon simply gives 0.5% of the net purchase price of eligible products to the organisation of the customer’s choice. We hope that by making it accessible through the Amazon shopping app on Android devices customers will find it even easier to use and get into the habit of using it by default.

How does Amazon fund this initiative? Do you benefit from it?

In my mind, AmazonSmile is a win for everybody. It benefits customers who can do a little good while they shop, supporting a charity of their choice by choosing from over 16,000 charities and counting before they start shopping, but all at no extra cost to them. It helps charities by providing an additional source of financial support – again with very little input from them required. Any charity that is registered and in good standing with the Charity Commission of either England and Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland can simply sign up to be part of AmazonSmile. For Amazon, the benefit is that our customers hopefully enjoy shopping with us even more, may recommend AmazonSmile to others, and may come back to AmazonSmile directly to make their next purchase. All of this reduces our efforts to attract customers – for example, through marketing spend – and therefore helps us to donate even more money to our customers’ favourite charitable organisations.

Which beneficiaries can AmazonSmile customers support?

In the UK, customers can select from a vast list of charities that are registered with the Charity Commission of either England and Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland and have enrolled in the AmazonSmile programme. We currently have over 16,000 participating organisations, including the likes of Marie Curie, RSPCA and Stonewall Equality Limited.

Amazon customers signed up for AmazonSmile can see the list of beneficiaries for the programme by following this link. Here you can search for charities in the search bar and then select your chosen charity to donate to every time you shop. Amazon customers who are interested in using the programme just have to follow a simple sign-up process the first time – it’s all free and easy to use.

AmazonSmile - Charitable giving ahead of the busiest shopping period of the year.jpg

Can customers apply AmazonSmile donations to any products they wish to purchase on from Amazon?

For the most part, yes, although some products are not eligible to generate a donation. In essence, smile.amazon.co.uk is almost a replica of amazon.co.uk - through AmazonSmile customers will receive the same shopping experience and benefits that they do with amazon.co.uk. The only difference is that they get to do good by generating donations to their chosen charities, while doing their everyday shopping.

So, what types of items are not eligible for AmazonSmile?

Items purchased through “Subscribe and Save” are one of the few examples that do not generate donations for AmazonSmile, however, the exemptions constitute only a small proportion of products available.

Will AmazonSmile be replacing other donation support schemes?

Traditional fundraising schemes will always be important and we have a number of charitable causes that Amazon support directly. You can read more about these via Amazon in the Community.

AmazonSmile provides an easy way for millions of our customers to donate to causes they care about while shopping, at no extra cost to themselves or their chosen organisation. We think it’s a great way for us to donate to a huge range of charitable organisations but with the causes selected by our customers themselves.

You shop, Amazon donates at smile.amazon.co.uk