How to shop like a pro online!

October 20, 2009

How do you make sure you get the Zimmerman dress your ordered and not a knock-off copy? We show you how!

Hype About Security

Much has been written about the safety or otherwise of shopping on the net. Truth be told, most Australian e-tailers have very comprehensive security systems for accepting credit card details over the web and you are likely to be less at risk placing your details over a secure website than handing your credit card over to a retail assistant.

Pay Securely

Use sites your browser recognises as secure – look for an unbroken key or padlock at the bottom of your screen. Don’t enter financial information that isn’t needed for the sale. Most reputable Australian e-tailers provide multiple options for payment, including online credit card payment, phone credit card payment or the good old fashioned cheque in the post.

Know the Business

Try and get a feel for who the company is and where they are located. There should be an “About Us” section or something similar. Phone the retailer if you want to talk to someone about a product or delivery times or send an email.

Know the Product

Try and understand from the product description and image if the product is what you are looking for. Check detailed specifications if necessary, look for product guarantees and ensure it will work in Australia. Always check the goods you receive immediately to ensure they match the description.

Check the Cost

Look for extras like currency conversion charges, taxes, customs duties, delivery fees, packaging and posting. Shop around for price.

Check for Privacy

Find out how your personal details will be used and decide whether you want them to be passed on to anyone else.

Confirm the Order

You should be given the chance to confirm or reject your order before you pay for it.

Keep Records

Print out your order before you send it and note any reference numbers. Or, store the confirming email in an email file.

Resolve Conflicts

Contact the trader about any problem as soon as possible. If unresolved, contact the relevant industry dispute scheme or your local consumer affairs or fair trading agency.

Now for the Delivery

The retailer should give you an idea of when the order will arrive. Make a note in your diary of the date and if it hasn’t arrived, call or email the retailer. When you receive the goods, check them thoroughly to make sure you are happy with the quality.

For more great cash advice click here!

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