We’ve never had a time like we’re currently in, which means that many of us are having to try new methods to cope and carry out everyday tasks in different ways. For many people, this means looking at ways of shopping safely online, as online shopping isn’t something they have done before. Online shopping is likely to become vital to many of us over the coming weeks as we’re unable to get out as much and rely on internet shopping and home delivery services.
There is nothing to worry about in doing this, as long as you do so safely and responsibly. We have put together some hints and tips to help ensure that your online experience goes as smoothly as possible.
Shopping Safely Online
As household items become harder to get hold of, people are turning into entrepreneurs and selling items online. This is great for consumers, as the internet has made it easier to get hold of sought-after goods. However, Action Fraud have reported receiving a large number of complaints surrounding Coronavirus related crimes, so it is something you should be aware of.
This doesn’t mean that you should avoid internet shopping altogether, it just means you need to make sure you know how to do shopping safely online.
If It’s Too Good To Be True
If a deal sounds like it is too good to be true, then keep your wits about you as the chances are it is. Remember that people online may know more than you about how it all works. If something seems like it would be impossible to source for the price it is normally, then do some research and make sure the place your considering buying from is legit. There are loads of review sites and social media places where you can read about peoples experiences with many different companies so don’t be afraid to load up Google and turn detective.
Consider how to make your purchase and how you’ll be best protected. We don’t always advise shopping on a credit card but these do offer you a level of protection so could be worth considering if you’re buying something online. If you’re paying via Paypal then make sure you always use the Service option and never send things via the Friends and Family option as this offers you no protection for your transaction.
If you’re booking something like travel or hiring something then look into what additional insurance they offer, as they often offer cancellation insurance which can help give you an assurance that they are legitimate and will be able to help with whatever you need.
Shop From Recommended Retailers
The chances are your friends & family have shopped online. Why not ask their recommendations on who to shop with? By using a trusted retailer you have peace of mind that your online shopping experience will go as smoothly as possible. Review websites will help with this also, but there is nothing that gives you peace of mind more than hearing from someone you trust that they had a good experience with an online retailer. Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family for their recommendations, the chances are they’ll be delighted to help you if they can!
Protecting Your Device
Whatever device you’re using for online shopping, you should make sure it is as safe as possible. Keeping virus protection up to date, using secure passwords and not sharing your log in details with others are great ways to do this. If you need any advice with virus protection or looking after your computer please get in touch as we’d love to help with any element of shopping safely online.