What To Consider When Shopping Online – Part 2

Red paper shopping bag with handles.
What To Consider When Shopping Online – Part 2

With more of us shopping online for everything from our groceries to clothing, there are a few things that we need to consider anytime we’re looking to place an online order. In the first part of this article series, we covered the basic principles of shopping online – always check the sizing chart, only shop on secure websites, how to spot a scam, and double-checking the return policy. We’re going to take it a step further this time and tell you a few things to consider when shopping online.

1 Be Careful of ‘Pay Later’ Schemes

One of the biggest trends for e-commerce stores is to offer the option of paying for your order in installments, similar to how you would pay off your phone or car. Major retailers are now offering you the opportunity to split the cost of your order over multiple installments. The most popular providers that you’ll often find at checkout is Klarna and Clearpay. Only use these payment methods if you’re sure that you’ll be able to pay them back. It’s easy to get carried away when your £300 order is put through one of these payment methods, and you only get charged £100 at the time of checkout.

2 Look Around for Discount Codes

E-commerce websites are almost always running discount codes. On most websites, you’ll usually receive a 10% discount code when you join their newsletter or when you open an account to make your first order. If you want to save a little and make sure you’re always getting the best deal, you can install a discount code extension like Honey. These extensions will automatically search for any available discount codes at checkout and apply them to your order.

3 Use PayPal At Checkout

If you’re not sure about a website or you want to be extra cautious, then you should always use PayPal at checkout. You can easily link your bank account, debit card, or credit card to your PayPal account. Using this method at checkout means that the merchant won’t be able to see your bank details and you get added buyer protection. If your order doesn’t show up, or you have another issue, you can open a case with PayPal to get your money back. Checking out with PayPal is one of the quickest methods of express checkout as your details are usually saved to your account. If you’re buying a limited edition item that is going to sell out in a flash, using PayPal can be the difference between grabbing your item and missing it.

4 Be Extra Careful with Luxury Purchases

The internet is full of people who want to scam you out of your hard-earned money. If you’re looking to buy a luxury item such as GHD hair straighteners or a Saint Laurent bag, you want to make sure you are buying from a legitimate distributor. The brand’s official e-commerce website will always be the most reliable, but they’ll typically also list their official stockists. If the store you’re looking at isn’t listed, then it’s probably a scam. Certain brands like Louis Vuitton are only available through their official website, so anyone else claiming to sell genuine products that are not preowned will be trying to scam you.

5 Never Use Public Wi-Fi While Online Shopping

The final thing that you should consider when online shopping is to not use public Wi-Fi while making an online purchase. Public Wi-Fi includes the free Wi-Fi that you can get at coffee shops, restaurants, and shopping malls. If you need to make a purchase when you’re on the go, you should always use your mobile data to get a secure connection and to make sure no one is trying to steal your information.

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    Written by Liam Reynolds

    Young female browsing through e-commerce product images on a Samsung tablet.

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