Online shopping is convenient and quick and offers almost limitless choice. But buying things with the click of a mouse also has its pitfalls. This article gives you specific tips for a safe online shopping experience that goes beyond simply having a secure password.
Online shopping needs to be secure as well as speedy, so you should stick to the following recommendations:
Shops you can trust: before making a purchase, use websites such as Trustpilot to check customer reviews and feedback. Having clear contact information and a robust data privacy plan are also indicators of a website’s trustworthiness.
Check SSL certificates: make sure that the website where you’re shopping has a valid SSL certificate. You can recognise this by a URL beginning “https://” and a small padlock symbol in your browser.
Secure payment methods: use established payment methods like credit cards or PayPal. Payment services such as Klarna or AfterPay often provide buyer protection. Be particularly careful when transferring money directly to a seller and avoid unsafe payment options such as Western Union or money transfer via email.
Use private networks: avoid public WiFi for online purchases as they are more vulnerable to hacking. Use a secure private network instead.
Regular account checks: check your bank and credit card statements regularly for any unusual activity.
Compare online shops: which one meets your requirements?
Choosing the right provider has a big impact on your shopping experience. Here are some suggestions:
Local versus international: local providers can deliver more quickly, while international shops often offer a wider product range. Think about what’s more important to you.
Shipping costs: these may vary greatly. Some online shops like Zalando or Digitec offer free delivery on purchases over a certain value. Others, such as eBay, calculate shipping costs based on the weight and size of the item.
Tracking options: choose services that offer detailed tracking so that you always know where your deliveries are.
Return policy: find out about your return options. Some online shops offer free returns, which can be particularly useful for clothes and shoes.
Sustainability: look out for environmentally friendly delivery options, such as carbon-neutral shipping or the use of recyclable packing materials.
Smart online shopping
Use comparison sites: visit websites such as toppreise.ch or Comparis to compare prices and products effectively.
Ratings and reviews: read customer reviews to gain an impression of the quality of the product and of the customer service.
Vouchers and discounts: websites such as preispirat.ch or gutscheinsammler.de offer a variety of voucher codes. Make the most of seasonal deals such as Black Friday or Cyber Monday to save on your purchases.
Wish lists: Create wish lists on platforms such as Amazon or Zalando to keep an eye on changes in the price of your favourite products. Tools such as Keepa can help you track when prices move up or down.
Remember that online shopping is more than just a purchasing process – it is a learning process. You become more adept with every click and every order. Stay informed and use the opportunities the digital world has to offer to shop securely and smartly.