Online shopping is more popular than ever these days. The convenience of ordering clothes, games, and even groceries without cash is drawing more and more people to shop online. But, although the concept of online shopping is considered to be largely safe, consumers still risk losing money to dubious stores without receiving the products.
However, these online business fraud traps can be avoided if you, as a buyer, pay attention to factors like seals of approval, secure checkout processes, ratings, and more.
Shop online safely: tips to spot fake online shops
Even if it doesn't seem like it at first glance, it's still possible for you as a consumer to find out just how serious an online store is, as long as you know what to look for. There are some characteristics by which a fake online store can be recognized . In order to shop online safely, you should always check a few things beforehand.
Delivery times and availability
The online store seller must also be open and transparent when it comes to delivery. For example, there should always be a way to contact the operator. In addition, an exact delivery time for the product must be specified, and it must be easy to find. As soon as information such as "delivery times are not binding" or similar is provided on the website, it is advisable to doubt the reliability of this provider and verify the seriousness of the store
Another way to check the seriousness of an online store is to research Internet forums that deal with product reviews and information about online stores. Attention is also required here, since such reviews can also come from the store owner himself.
While there are programs that can check reviews for some degree of authenticity, it's also possible to check reviews yourself based on a few features you should be aware of.
Payment by invoice
Payment by invoice is probably the safest method, since the customer only pays when he has received the goods. As a rule, the invoice is printed and sent with the goods. After that, the sum is simply transferred. However, it should be noted that the transfer must be made within a certain period.
Payment via online payment services such as PayPal
Another secure and therefore popular payment method on the Internet is paying with online payment services such as PayPal. It also offers special buyer protection. If you do not receive the goods you have paid for or if there is another case of fraud, you just need to report it to PayPal. The payment service will immediately return your money.
How to find safe online stores?
It is not for nothing that online shopping is one of the most popular ways of shopping these days, because it is extremely convenient and quick to do. However, to make sure your purchase is safe, you should pay attention to a few things.
When making your purchases online, pay attention to the seriousness and reliability of the store operator and the product itself using real product reviews. Important indicators for this are a complete imprint, terms and conditions and data protection declaration, as well as clearly visible contact details. When in doubt, always check testimonials from other customers.
In addition, you should also think about the payment method. Buying on account and paying via PayPal is considered especially safe when buying on the Internet. But you can also buy online safely with a credit card, especially if you have registered your card for procedures such as Mastercard SecureCode or Verified by Visa. Transactions can only be completed if the TAN sent by SMS is entered correctly.
But the quality seals of independent and reputable institutions can also be important indicators of a reputable online store.