Jun 22, 2015

The Do Nots of Online Shopping


Every little helps?

Indeed it does. Especially when you realise you don’t have to brave either the overburdened roads nor the overcrowded department stores anymore when you want to do a spot of gentle shopping.

Why spend any part of your precious day with people you’d rather not share your time and space with at any time when you can do exactly the same thing from the comfort of your favourite chair with music that wasn’t composed with elevators in mind in the background and a drinkable coffee by your side.

One that doesn’t have the gimmick of your name scribbled on the cup. Because everyone knows who you are in your own home.

And that’s where you’re going to be doing your shopping from now on.

Welcome to the revolution. You might have come along a little bit later than most of us. But that doesn’t matter. The most important thing is that you’re here now.

But where to begin?

One of the most important things to consider when you shop online is the security of the store that you are visiting.

Make sure that the website has a trustmark. This is a sign that it is a safe and secure site for you to use. If the site doesn’t contain one of them or has minimum contact details (eg) a contact E Mail but no physical address or phone number then it’s best to treat them with caution at the very least.

Don’t be naive. There are people out there who will do anything and everything they can to relieve you of your money. All of it if possible.

So take care at all times when you are shopping online.

That’s especially true when you encounter, as you will, incoming E Mails and websites offering deals that seem too good to be true.

Because they are good. And they won’t be true.

Take my word for it. Avoid them like the proverbial plague.

If, for example, you get an E Mail inviting you to purchase discount Rolex watches or similar, highly desirable items then that means any one of three different things.

It’s spam.

It’s spam.

Or, finally-it’s spam. End of.

Don’t be tempted. Spammers have but one aim in life-to make a quick buck. They’ll take down your credit card details and steal from your account frequently and with no hesitation whatsoever. They may even pass your details onto someone else who’ll do exactly the same thing.

They don’t care if you’re really nice people who volunteer at the local hospital or organise jumble sales at your youngest child’s school. Being a decent and respectable member of society doesn’t give you online immunity.

If you are certain of the site and businesses standing and go ahead with a purchase then do be aware that problems may still occur with even the biggest and most seemingly trustworthy internet sites.

And that you might want to return the goods and get your money back else get a refund if they never appear in the first place.

So with that in mind, always pay suppliers by credit card if you can rather than by BACS or with your debit card.

Paying by credit card makes it easier for you to dispute fraudulent charges-plus, by law, your liability is limited. Unlike if you pay by the other two methods where the cash comes directly out of your account into that of the sellers.

Getting it back if needed after that has happened can be very difficult indeed.

There is one more thing to remember about online shopping and what to look out for when you are making an online purchase.

And that’s how you feel about the site you are using.

Trust your instincts. Is there something, anything about that website that doesn’t sit, for whatever reasons, well with you or just makes you feel a little uncomfortable or uncertain?

Even if all the other boxes have been ticked?

Then trust your instincts. Because no-one knows you better than both a person and a consumer than yourself.

And if you don’t feel right about something then there’s probably a good reason for it. Besides, there are plenty more out there offering you exactly the same thing. And half the fun of online shopping is looking around to see who can give you the best deal.

And we’ll be looking at exactly how you can do that in the next blog.

See you then!