The holiday shopping season is almost upon us! Did we say almost? Even before the Christmas trees go up, November is filled with bargains. The two most well-known bargain days are Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Around these two days, the retailers lure customers with bargains and discounts normally only dreamt of. It’s cold outside? Not to worry! Bargains can be found online instead of standing in a long, cold line outside the stores. We have some tips for online shopping just for you.
Some older online shoppers may be new at the game and wonder how to shop online. Safe online shopping tips are as important to know as to how to use your smartphone or simple online grocery shopping tips. Why? Because elderly shopping habits have changed. Older shoppers are now online more than ever!
“In the US, 49% of individuals between 52–70 years spend at least 11 hours a week online. 1 in 4 mobile shoppers in the US is above the age of 55 years.” Convertcart
See if you find a certificate on the store's website. Has it been checked by a seal of approval provider like Trusted Shops? This assures you that certain services such as warranty claims, and customer service are available.
Look at the results of this website on rating portals. Negative experiences lead to online ratings more often than good experiences. Check Trustpilot or Amazon reviews.
Check the company information on their imprint or legal pages. Are they a US company, or are they located in the Far East? That may raise some red flags if you may need to return an article.
You can pay on the Internet in many ways. The safest way is to pay by invoice, but not all merchants offer this option. In addition to credit cards, there are third-party providers like Stripe, Paypal, GPay, or ApplePay to name but a few. Unlike debit cards, purchases made by credit cards are protected by the Fair Credit Billing Act.
If you are unsure, NEVER send money before you have received the goods. This is safe for Amazon shopping, but may be unsafe for a company you have not previously used.
If you buy something in a shop you normally only have the right to return it if it’s not working. Some stores will take back items for store credit as long as they haven’t been opened or used. A store’s return and refund policies differ from state to state.
Amazon Prime has made free returns synonymous with eCommerce for many of us. Most people won’t purchase from an online store that charges return shipping fees.
Under US federal law, shops must accept defective merchandise returns. You also have up to three days to change your minds about a product you purchased that cost at least $25. Also, check your state laws which may also apply to your return.
Returning purchases is never much fun. What should you do to make sure this process goes smoothly? Look for the return policy on items you want to buy before purchasing.
Do you have more questions? The Federal Trade Commission website can also help you!
“Elderly shopping habits and needs can include many things, such as prescriptions and other medical supplies, groceries, clothing, shoes, and other household items. Luckily, all of these items can be purchased online and delivered right to the door.” Grisworld Home Care
Anyone who has shopped online more often will know it: The part where you must enter your data including the delivery address. For many, it’s an annoying necessity. Others don’t like to reveal their personal data. If you want to order something online and have it delivered, there's sometimes no way around it.
Bidding on goods from your home computer has been possible for many years thanks to eBay & Co. As a buyer, however, you should keep a few things in mind when bidding on Internet auctions.
Shopping “sight unseen” is a risk when shopping online.
Often, purchasing from foreign suppliers is cheaper or products are offered that are not available at home. But if problems arise, then a solution is often more difficult or even impossible. If a foreign company has an American branch, then the same regulations apply as for American companies.
Things get more complicated when you make purchases outside the US or Canada. Enforcing your claims may be difficult depending on the legal agreement with the country concerned. Therefore, double caution is advised for purchase contracts with companies whose registered office is not within the US.
Don't forget: Customs duties may also be incurred when buying products outside the US.
“Shopping online has become a common practice for many people, especially those who want to stay at home. As online shopping grows more popular and the population grows older, seniors shopping online will increase. By being vigilant and thinking clearly to protect your personal information, you can become a smart and experienced online shopper and have safer holiday shopping this season.” MYAFH
Really not sure about the website? Check their company information on Who.is or with your Better Business Bureau. As a last resort, and if your child is not a lawyer but instead a website designer, there are many online legal advice websites such as Findlaw.com
We Know You Want to Get Your Shopping Bag Ready!
This year Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving, November 26. Cyber Monday is November 29. Discounts within Cyber Week could start on November 22, and often there are promotions the entire month. Some people even say “Black November” because of all the bargains happening. However: Watch out for scoundrels!
Every shopper appreciates the convenience of shopping from home. For seniors, online shopping is an excellent way to ensure continued independence and a consistent quality of life. We wish you happy and safe shopping!
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