The Mums Guide to Safe Online Shopping

Online shopping is increasing as more and more mums are realising the advantages of shopping from home or work when it is convenient, without children, car parks and the hassle of going to the shops. To ensure your online safety we have put together our top tips to keeping you safe when purchasing from online retailers.

Prior to Purchasing:

1. Browse the site and look at the key pages like About Us, Contact Us, Delivery and Shipping terms, Payments and Refunds and what happens with Warranty/Faulty stock. Ensure that the site can answer any of your questions in relation to key issues such as how to pay, how they ship the goods, what happens if you want to change your purchase and how they ensure you receive the product.

2. Check the contact details. I personally like seeing a phone number (it helps me to feel more comfortable) as well as an email address that I can utilise if I have an issue. This way I can either email or phone depending upon my needs and time constraints. Also depending upon the purchase you are making, you may like to test the contact details by calling them or sending an email with a product question prior to purchasing.

3. Check the Privacy Policy/Statement (often found at the bottom of the page) to check that your details aren’t going to be passed on or sold and are safe.

4. You can also do a quick Google search or check their Facebook page to see what comments there are about the company.

When Purchasing:

1. Make sure you only pay via a secure web page. Check the URL/website address to see that it begins with https:// and that there is a locked padlock icon in the browser.

2. Check to verify the SSL Certificate and if it is still valid – this just can be done by pointing or clicking on the seal.

3. Payment through PayPal or BPay can act as a further security measure.

4. Never send your Credit Card details via email.

5. Always print a copy or keep a copy of your receipt/transaction as proof of purchase.

In many ways, shopping online is similar to shopping in-store:

– Trust your gut! If you are not sure about a shop, dig a little deeper or go elsewhere.
– It if looks too good to be true – it probably is.
– If the website look suspicious or unprofessional be wary – would you purchase from a store if the didn’t have a good looking shopfront or if their staff didn’t give you the information they were after?

This article was written by Lorraine Salvi, founder of MumsDelivery – She is the proud mother of two wonderful children now aged almost 4 and 2yrs who each day re-affirms her desire to run a successful business and continue to remain a work from home mother. As a stay at home mum and a business woman, she embodies the key person that MumsDelivery aims to help – a busy Mum.

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All About Online Shopping

The process of online shopping is really easy. It allows people to shop for products and services from the comfort of their own home with the help of a computer and internet connection. A person can visit an online retailer and purchase an item with their credit card. The products or services are then delivered to the address that was provided. With a growth of 33% in 2005, online shopping is continuing to gain popularity all over the world.

There are a number of benefits attached to online shopping. The most important advantage is that of convenience. Customers can buy whatever they want during breaks at work or while they are at home without going into crowded malls. Online shopping allows people to shop at any time of the day. One can also book mark a page and come back when they think that the time is right without feeling rushed.

Always make sure that you are shopping on websites that are legit. You can do so by looking up their names in the Better Business Bureau database. Be careful of phishing. Make sure that the website is secure by ensuring that the address starts with ‘https’. Only give out information about your credit card once you are sure that it is secure. Try and use a credit card as opposed to a debit card or checking account as it is easier to have the theft stopped as compared to the other two alternatives.

Don’t get carried away with the cheap rates that you are getting online, as they may pad up process in the shipping. So, be careful and ensure that you double check the shipping rates and compare them with postal rates from UPS, Unites States Postal Service or FedEx. Also, make sure that you do not over pay your shipping charges and look for other details like cancellations, return policy etc. Make sure that you have the contact information of the online retailer in case you have any questions or want to track your shipment.

Today, you can buy absolutely anything online. People buy groceries, food products, medicines and even herbal remedies. The most popularly bought products online are books. According to an online article by Nielsen in January 2008, 41 % of internet users bought books online. Clothing, DVDs, electronics, games and tickets are a few other things that are popularly bought through the online medium.

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