While online shopping offers some benefits, there are also a lot of risks to it, especially when buying gadgets. In fact, the non-delivery of products bought online has approximately 109,000 victims across the country. It ranked as the second internet crime with the most victims.
And when you’re dealing with gadgets, which can be expensive, you don’t want to risk being scammed. So it’s important to equip yourself with some knowledge about online shopping. This article will serve as a guide for you to make sure you’re safely buying gadgets online. The list will also include some tips on making the most out of your money.
Here are some tips for safe online shopping
- Make Sure You Know What Product Liability Is
Some defective gadgets just don’t work, while some can inflict injuries. And because of the product liability law, you can sue the manufacturer or seller for this kind of negligence. But before you proceed with the case, you first need to know: what is product liability?
Product liability states that manufacturers and sellers are responsible for their products. The law is based on the idea that manufacturers and sellers know more about their products. So when the gadget poses unreasonable dangers to the user, they’re responsible for it.
But just because you got injured from the product doesn’t mean you’ll easily win the case. Unless you’re dealing with a strict product liability case, you need to prove that the gadget has:
- Defective design
- Poor manufacturing
- No warning about the dangers of using the gadget
In some cases, you’ll encounter comparative negligence, which puts half of the fault on you. In such cases, the defendant only has to settle for half of the amount they owe you.
To avoid this, you should get help from product liability lawyers. Having an expert by your side will help you prove your innocence in a product liability case. A product liability lawyers can do a thorough investigation to determine who is accountable and provide relevant evidence to support it. A lawyer can also guarantee that your claim covers all potential losses.
More importantly, they can guide you throughout the entirety of the case.
- Buy from Stores That Have a Good Reputation
Buying gadgets that should be expensive at a lower cost seems like you’re saving a lot. But some shops who offer ridiculous discounts are often frauds. You’ll most likely not get the item you paid for, receive a fake one, or they will send a defective one.
To avoid either of these two cases, you should buy from trusted stores. Branded stores like Apple and Google are the safest stores to buy from. Some stores actually have low-cost yet high-quality products. If you’re buying from a store you don’t know, be sure to check what people have to say on product review sites.
- Look into the Gadget’s Warranty
Given the amount of investment you put into your gadgets, it makes sense to take care of them to extend their lifespan. But even after doing everything you can, there will always be situations when you need to repair or replace its parts. This is where product warranties take place.
Before buying the product, verify what’s included in the warranty and for how long. Some gadgets have limited coverage between 1 month to about 3 to 4 years. In some cases, you also need to activate the warranty first, so ask the vendor or check the owner’s manual.
- Verify the Model, Name, and Specifications of the Gadget You’re Buying
Most gadgets have the same name on the store, but different models or specifications. For example, each laptop’s model differs in the specifications they offer. Some have integrated graphics cards, while some have separate ones. These laptops perform differently, so you need to make sure you’re buying what you need.
Always check the model number, product name, and specifications of the gadget you’re buying. To verify, always review the description part of any product listing. In most cases, sellers will specify important information about the gadget here. Or message the seller about these kinds of product details.
- Compare the Prices
Everyone knows gadgets are expensive, but some shops offer lower prices than others. When you’re on a tight budget, it’s best to compare the prices of the product in different shops.
The good thing about online shopping is that you can easily check the prices from different stores. You won’t have to waste time and energy walking to and fro on the streets to get the best deal. Online shopping lets you compare prices by visiting a few websites that sell the device you’re looking for.
Make sure you have at least four websites or product listings to compare. Steer clear from those that offer unreasonable prices. Unless they come from a reputable store, gadgets that have lower prices than their original market price tend to be fake. You can also use price comparison apps and websites to make the job easier for you.
- Keep an Eye Out for Sales and Discounts
Another good thing about buying online is the use of discounts and coupon codes. Online stores also offer seasonal sales, especially for expensive products like gadgets.
Search for coupon codes on Google or take note of the store’s future sales. There’s also something called Cyber Monday, which is a great sales holiday offer. Also, take advantage of holiday seasons such as Christmas and Black Friday.
- Check Out the Store’s Delivery Options
Sometimes, the quality of the product depends on the shipping company you choose. That means some handle your products with care, while some can damage your gadget.
Before proceeding with your purchase, check out the store’s delivery options. Some online stores provide one shipping method, while others offer a variety. Make sure that the courier you choose has enough successful deliveries. Search the shipping company online before choosing the courier.
- Don’t Forget about the Delivery Fee
At the same time, consider the cost that comes with the shipment. Delivery fees depend on the distance between where you want to receive the item and the store. In other terms, the greater the distance, the more you’ll be paying for the delivery.
Buy gadgets from stores within your local area. If the item isn’t available where you are, make sure you’re paying the right delivery fee. Some shipping companies provide a delivery rate per distance calculator on their website. If the listing didn’t mention any rates, be sure to check out the courier’s website and calculate the delivery fee.
- Choose Insured Shipping Options
Gadgets are fragile items, so the shipment should be safe and careful. It’s best to choose insured delivery when buying gadgets online. Insured delivery requires the shop or the website to replace the item if you receive a damaged product.
If, in case, the damage isn’t visible, you need to test out the gadget. Faulty gadgets can injure anyone who uses them. Work with product liability lawyers to know who is accountable for the damage to the product.
- Opt for Secure Payment Options
Online shopping now provides a cashless payment method. That means you can easily pay for the gadget you’re buying online. But, as you can see, online payments can be dangerous in some ways. When you buy from poorly-protected websites, you risk being a target for hackers.
Most well-known e-commerce sites accept both credit and debit cards. And these websites have an SSL certificate for secure transactions. In case you’re buying from other merchants, it helps to know if the website is safe for online payments.
On the other hand, you can also make your online transactions safe by doing the following:
- Use two-factor authentication
- Don’t use public WiFi when buying online
- Use a strong password and a mobile phone backup
- Make sure that the e-payment platform or app you’re using knows how to handle your online data
Online shopping for gadgets has a lot of advantages to it, but also some risks. If you haven’t bought anything online yet, it can be scary to do so. But you don’t need to worry about this since there are some ways you can avoid the dangers of online shopping. With this guide, you can have a safe online shopping experience and make the most out of it.