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Tips for Safe and Efficient Online Holiday Shopping

The Yuletide season is near! Have you shopped for Christmas yet? 

With the ongoing pandemic, holiday shopping might be best done online.

Aside from it being safer, you also get a wider variety of options compared to shopping in malls.

During the lockdown, most shoppers spoiled themselves through e-commerce sites such as Shopee and Lazada, among others.

Learning how to maximize your shopping experience is best if you want to save while you shop. 

Here are some tips to help you with your online Christmas shopping experience.

Always check product descriptions and reviews

Have you ever heard of people saying that they bought a cabinet online because it’s so cheap, but when the product came, they were so surprised that it was actually a cabinet for doll houses? 

As much as we don’t want to face it, this is very common when shopping online.

To avoid misleading products, always check the product description.

For instance, when buying an office table online, make sure you check the product dimensions so you won’t get confused by the actual size of it. 

Checking reviews should also be part of all your online purchases.

Checking a shop or product’s previous transaction reviews will help you build a clearer picture on whether you should buy it or not.

There may be times when you’re all set on buying something, but the reviews on the product are mostly negative.

When this happens, always look for a better option by browsing through other e-shops or sites.

The key is going through lots of reviews and joining online communities where real consumers and users share tips, hacks, and other relevant information.

This helps you prepare your finances properly and avoid overpaying for certain items.

Make sure the seller is legit

You probably already know this, but there are thousands of sellers on popular e-commerce sites.

There will be times when you’ll want to buy an item from a certain seller because they offer it a lot cheaper as compared to other sellers.

Fight your urge to buy it right away.

Whenever you feel like the prices they offer for their items is too good to be true, it probably is. 

Remember to not always give the benefit of the doubt when it comes to these things.

But if you do, make sure to take precautionary measures, such as these, to avoid being scammed:

  1. Check the shop details to see how long their shop has been selling. If the shop was only created about a week or a month ago with no history of any transactions, you might want to stay away from that shop for now and shop from other, more credible sellers.
  2. If you’re making an inquiry through the chat feature of e-commerce sites and the seller wants you to contact them directly through other forms of communication, such as online messaging apps, that’s a good sign that the shop is not legit. Remember, sellers on most e-commerce sites will only contact you through the platform itself, unless you volunteer your personal information and have them contact you directly. 
  3. Another thing you could do is to check if the shop has any active websites or social media accounts. If they do, read through their pages and see if there are any malicious or sketchy activities. If they have a website, check their “About” page. You may also want to check how long their account or website has been running.
  4. If the only option of paying for their products is through a bank transfer off the e-commerce site, this is a huge red flag. Legit sellers will accept payment through the e-commerce sites’ payment channels, most even accept cash-on-delivery.

Another thing, if you decide to shop outside e-commerce sites, such as online shops on social media networks, make sure to look for reviews.

If there are none available on their page, feel free to request from them some proof of transactions or legal documents that can help prove they are a legitimate online seller.

This is very important because a lot of online shops do not accept cash-on-delivery as a payment option, and will most likely ask you to pay at least a down payment before they ship out the items you’ve bought. 

Maximize delivery fees

When shopping online, the products you order will be sent to you through various courier services.

Of course, each purchase you make will have an additional delivery fee on top of the product’s price.

Instead of going through your shopping list one by one, group it in categories.

By doing this, you get to find shops that cater to each category. If you’re looking for home appliances such as blenders, electric stoves, or televisions, you may start searching for shops that are focused on selling these kinds of products.

Doing this will let you spend less on your shipping fees so you can allot more of your budget on the other products in your shopping list.

Shopping for the holidays is fun, but it can be even better if you know how to make the best out of each and every purchase.

Be a better shopper with these tips and enjoy your online shopping experience even more.

Download the Giga Life app and avail of a data promo to enjoy Smart’s fast 5G internet so you can shop on your favorite e-commerce sites hassle free.

Want to become part of the Smart network? Here’s how you can retain your number and #MakeTheSmartMove with our quick and easy guide.

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