Are you ready to buy online?

Did you know that a typical Internet user only starts buying online after 3 or 4 years of using the Internet? This is greatly influenced by the fact that there are a lot of security and risk issues being discussed that hampers online purchase.

 

Shopping online is very convenient especially if the goods you’re interested in are not easy to find from your neighborhood store or you are avoiding the typical holiday rush.

 

Ask around
If you are contemplating of buying online, it is best to ask friends who have tried it and recommend websites where they bought products from.

 

Where are you located?
Before ordering from an online store, see if they display full corporate information in their website, such as company name, address, and telephone number. Can you call them and make inquiries? If the website does not have this information, don’t even think of buying from them. Such is the reason why our Internet and Outsourcing directory only accepts website submission where full contact information can be seen.

 

Do you value my privacy?
Check the website’s privacy policy. It should contain what information is being collected from customers and how it is used. The last thing that you want is to receive numerous unsolicited e-mail messages after signing up in a website service.

 

That is why it is very important to keep two to several e-mail addresses with specific usage purpose. Keep your primary or work e-mail address for business purpose only and use another to sign-up in discussion group, message board, guestbook, newsletter, website registration, and the like.

 

For websites that require user registration, make sure to use a strong password, one that is composed of alphanumeric characters. Keep several passwords, for specific purposes, so that if one gets compromised, it will not endanger your other online accounts. For example you don’t use corporate e-mail account password to your discussion list membership access.

 

Warranty, refund, returns
Sometimes, a consumer gets anxious to buy an item online and order it right away without doing much due diligence. Apart from the contact details and privacy policy, you will need to check the warranty, refund and return policy of the website. What are your options if the goods never arrive or the items are damaged upon receipt? Do they offer a refund if you’re unsatisfied with the product? If it is an electronic gadget, how long is the warranty period and process to avail of it? If you need to return a product, who shoulders the shipping cost?

 

Once ready to order, make sure that the shipping charges are perfectly clear to avoid unwanted surprises upon receipt of the product. In website pages where you need to disclose your credit card information, make sure that the web page is secured. Once the purchase is made, you will receive a receipt via email or an order confirmation page at the end of your transaction. It is best to print and save it for record-keeping purposes. Some websites offer shipment tracking and it will be good for you to use this feature.

 



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Janette Toral is an e-commerce advocate in the Philippines. She is the site owner of DigitalFilipino.com.

Janette Toral – who has written posts on DigitalFilipino: E-Commerce, Internet Marketing in the Philippines by Janette Toral.


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