Smart 21 Tips for Buying Online Safely And Save Money




If I could tell you the fact about convenience, there is every reason in the world to shop online, whether you are buying stuffs in large quantity or high ticket products like car. The fact is that: the bargains are there, the selection is mind-boggling, and the shopping is secure... More over, shipping is fast, and the returns are easy with the right e-etailers [a retailer selling goods via electronic transactions on the Internet]

The convenience of being able to do that from home, at any time, together with the possibility to compare several prices from different sites make shopping online a very attractive method to get rid of the typical holiday stress. But do we know how to purchase online safely?



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Online shopping is convenient, in that you can shop around, find the best prices, and have your packages delivered right to your doorstep without ever having to leave the comfort of your own home. But getting a great deal online involves more than just getting the lowest price. You'll want to be sure that products arrive on time, that quality is what you expected, that items include a proper warranty, and that there is a way for you to return products or get support with any questions or issues you have. And applying these tips will surely help improve the security of your shopping experience!



21. Tips to Buying Online Safely

1. USE A SECURE WIFI OR INTERNET CONNECTION

Although it is comfortable and easy to browse and buy through public networks, malls or stores, the truth is that these networks are often unreliable. The information packets transmitted over public connections can be captured easily by hackers and cyber criminals. For this reason, to make purchases or transactions in which you transfer personal information, we recommend that you go through a secure network.

2. KEEP YOUR COMPUTER UPDATED AND PROTECTED

Online shopping is one of the processes in which more personal and dangerous information is transferred. For that reason, before you start shopping, make sure you have your computer secure, updated and equipped with a good antivirus product.

3. BUY ON KNOWN AND REPUTABLE WEBSITES

Searching the internet for the best offers can take you to the unknown and unreliable. Stay away from them. Check that the URL of the web site matches where you think it is, and that its address begins with https. Shopping at trusted and reputable websites can avoid becoming a victim of identity theft or data.

4. FIND AND REVIEW PRIVACY AND RETURN POLICIES

Before buying from an online store, make sure that their Privacy Policy is easily located on the site and up to date. Do you know what to do if your gift is not right? How can you return it? These are also aspects to consider when choosing where to shop.


5. Avoid offers that seem “too good to be true”
Any e-store that promises too much at too low a price is suspicious. If the price is too low, consider whether the merchant came by the items legally, if you will ever receive the items you paid for, whether the items are actually the brand shown or a cheap substitute, if the item will work, if you will be able to return damaged goods – or if the merchant is earning extra income by selling your financial information. Disreputable online stores – like their brick and mortar counterparts, may run an absurdly low price offer and then claim the item is out of stock, to try to sell you something else in a classic "bait and switch" scam.

6. If you are buying a Gift Card, read the Terms and Conditions
If the gift card is for someone else, be sure the store is legitimate, that the person uses the store, and that there are no hoops they will have to jump through.

7. Don’t use an e-store that requires more information than necessary to make the sale.
Expect to provide some method of payment, shipping address, telephone number, and email address, but if the merchant requests other information, walk away. You never want to give them your bank account information, social security information, or driver’s license number. Some companies ask questions about your interests, but these should always be optional and you should be cautious about providing the information. Does the merchant resell, rent, or share your information? Check the site’s privacy policy to understand how exposed your information may become. Many stores clearly state that they do not share, sell or rent consumer’s information – others say they own your info and can use it (or abuse it) however they choose. Stick to the companies that respect your privacy.

8. Need to create a password for the site? – make it unique.
You will often be asked to create an account with a password when you make a purchase. Usually, you can choose not to do this, and unless you will use the e-store frequently, don’t create an account. If you do want an account, make sure to use a unique and strong password.

9. Is the site secure?
Before entering any personal or credit card info onto a shopping site look to see if the web address on the page begins with "https:", not "http:" That little ’s’ tells you the website is secure and encrypted to protect your information.

10. Use a Credit Card or PayPal
Do not use a debit card or check as these do not have the same security protections in place for you should a problem arise.

Credit card purchases limit your liability to no more than $50 of unauthorized charges if your financial information is stolen, and the money in your bank account is untouched. Most debit cards do not offer this protection – and even when they do, you’re the one out of funds in the meantime.

Consider designating one credit card that is only for online shopping and transactions. This way, if the card gets compromised, you can quickly shut it down without impacting any other type of transactions.


11. ONLY SHARE PERSONAL INFORMATION THAT IS NECESSARY AND ONLY ON A SECURE FORM

If it surprises you that they ask you for some personal information (mobile, relatives’ name, place of birth …) to carry out the purchase, do not do it and it check that you are in the correct place. In addition, tools such as the virtual keyboard of Panda Security can avoid data theft if your computer is infected with some virus spyware.

12. AVOID LINKS IN EMAILS AND ADS

Is the offer you just received in an email too good to be true? Then, it probably is. During this time of year, e-mails and ads with offers and big discounts are a tool widely used by cybercriminals. Avoid phishing.

13. PERIODICALLY CHECK YOUR CREDIT CARD TRANSACTIONS

After making several purchases online, check that all charges on your account are known and controlled. If you find any suspicious activity, contact your bank, maybe you’ve been a victim of identity theft.

14. Always place orders from a secure connection
If your computer isn’t protected from potentially malicious software, your financial information and passwords are at risk from being stolen (and everything else you store on your computer or do online). This concept is so basic, yet only a fraction of the U.S. population adequately protects their computers. Use a secure connection – make sure your computer’s firewall is on.

If you’re shopping online while using a wireless network, it needs to be encrypted so someone who is lurking outside the house can’t collect your information. Avoid making any financial transactions when using a public network, as you may not know if it’s compromised.

15. Know the merchant and their reputation
If you already know the store, shopping their online store is very safe. You can always walk into the local store for help if there’s a problem, and if you know others who have had consistently positive experiences with the online store, you can be reassured of the site’s quality.

If you don’t know the store, it may still be the best bet; you just need to take a few more precautions. Conduct your own background check by looking at sites dedicated to reviewing e-stores. If the store isn’t reviewed or does not have favorable reviews, don’t order from their website.

16. You need to look for an online shop that is credible.

Credibility is an important thing to consider when you are shopping for things online. Therefore, it is important to read reviews and look for recommendations for online shops and websites. That is so that you can be assured on the trustworthiness as well as the credibility of the website.

17. Use trusted payment methods

When shopping online, it is very important to stay safe. Therefore, you need to check on the payment methods. Using credit cards is the most preferred method when it comes to online shopping. Other than that, it is important to use a verified payment method when shopping at an online store.

Choosing the right payment method is very important. Sometimes, it can also give you extra benefits.There are times where certain payment methods or certain credit cards can provide you with extra benefits by giving you discounts on the original price. Therefore, when choosing payment methods look at the promos and choose wisely to stay safe.


18. Always check the company’s shipping terms.
Some merchant’s charge exorbitant shipping fees that can turn a shopping bargain into an expensive mistake. Look to see if they provide tracking and insurance. Understand what carriers they use, and be particularly cautious if the item won’t be shipped within 10 days.

19. Use a reliable internet security program.
The best way to stay safe online is still by using an effective internet security product. Shopping is no exception. Rather, with the increasing volume of goods and data being exchanged online, security features like real-time anti-phishing and identity theft protection are more important than ever.

20. Plan your purchase

When shopping for stuff online, it is a good idea to plan your purchase. When you are looking to buy something you should look at the calendar to see the holidays. More often than not, online shops have sales before and during big holidays. When you want to buy something at a lower price, plan your purchases in advance so that you will know what you want to buy.

You should also plan your purchase to reduce the shipping cost. On most websites, shipping cost is not free unless you spend a specific amount of money on that website. Therefore, if you want free shipping, you need to purchase items that add up to that price. Collect and gather items that you want to purchase in one shopping cart or you can also ask friends to join in on your purchase so that you can save on the shipping.

21. Sales and promotion

When shopping online, you should look at the sales and the promotions if you want to save money. Not only on the website internally, but you should also look for discounts, coupons, rebates, and promos on external sites. I hope this 21 online shopping tips have help you enough...

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