Shopping can be a fun activity any time of the year. But there can be dangers associated with shopping. We are looking at how to be safe and smart when shopping.
Carol Odell of your BBB stops by KRDO NewsChannel 13 to chat with investigative reporter Tak Landrock about what to look for on a website to keep your financial information safe, how to make sure you are getting what you expect and how to avoid shipping and return surprises.
The majority of us shop online at least sometimes. Are we doing shopping safely? When we are shopping online we need to use common sense and caution. But that is not all we need to know, we need to know what the policies are for the stores or websites we are visiting, what their terms and conditions are. Shop around to make sure you are getting what you want for the right price.
One of the biggest problems when shopping online are the rogue websites that look like trusted businesses. You type in the address, select your products and get ready to check out but you never check the top http bar to make sure it reads https to show it is a secure website. If the webpage requesting your financial information does not have the https it is time to look for a new website to shop on.
You can also look for the BBBOnLine
seal and make sure that you click on it. It should link to the company’s BBB Business Review that will verify that they are a BBB Accredited Business. Be sure to check the URL to verify you have been directed to a BBB website and not a clever duplicate. If this seal does not link properly it has been copied and pasted and is not a legitimate seal.
When you pay with a credit card make sure that it is done through the credit card process. Card companies such as Visa or MasterCard will protect you if you have problems with the product or the vendor. If you get your product and it is not the same product that you ordered and you are having a hard time returning it with the vendor, you can call your credit card company. You can say it is not working for me and the merchant is not helping me out, I want to dispute these charges and your credit card company will help you out.
Print the confirmation of your order. Always keep the paper trail whether it is via a format on your computer or a paper copy. This shows how much you were charged, any applicable taxes and you can make sure it corresponds with your bill at the end of the month. Always make sure you are being billed correctly.
Refund policies are very important. Before you decide to buy, make sure you read through all of those policies. Some shops only have a limited time you can return the product and others, especially electronic stores, will charge a restocking fee to return a product and you need to know what that restocking fee is. It is not uncommon for a restocking fee to be at least 15%.
Check for the expected ship date. Companies are required by law to ship within 30 days after purchase or offer an alternative including a refund. When you do pay for shipping make sure you are getting the best bang for your buck.The BBB Eye
airs on PPLD-TV, Channel 17 on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:00 a.m., 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., and then again on Saturdays at 6:00 p.m.