7 Tips to Help You Enjoy a Safe Online Shopping Experience

Buying online offers a great shopping experience. You can enjoy lower prices and the package is delivered to your doorstep in a couple of days if not hours. Given below are a few tips that can help you enjoy a safer online buying experience.

1. Use a Secure Connection

First of all, make sure your computer is free of any malicious software or your password may get stolen. Despite the risk, only a fraction of US residents protect their computers from viruses. So, it’s better that you use a secure connection and keep your firewall always on.

2. Buy from a Reputable Merchant

Buying from a reputable merchant is a must. After all, you don’t want to end up compromising on the safety of your credit card details. All you need to do is do your homework before buying from a new merchant. If the store you are going to buy from is not reputable, look for a different store.

3. Avoid Unreasonable Offers

If an offer seems too good to be true, leave it. The prices offered by a store should be fair. If the prices are unreasonably low, know that something is fishy. Often, disreputable online stores sell items at unreasonably low prices. You should keep away from such scammers.

4. Don’t Forget to read the Terms and Conditions

Before you buy a gift card, make sure that the store is legitimate. Also, you may not want to forget reading the terms and conditions. They will help you make the right choice. After all, you don’t want to end up paying for hidden charges.

5. Don’t Work with a Seller that asks for too much information

When buying online, you have to provide a lot of required details like your email address, mobile number, shipping address, and payment method. However, if a merchant asks for additional information, close the page and walk away.

For instance, if you are asked for your driver’s license number, social security information and bank account information, know that they are scammers.

6. Create a Unique, Strong Password

Often, you have to create an account when buying online. Typically, signing up is not mandatory. It’s better to place your order and check out without creating an account unless you are the regular buyer of the store. Even if you choose to create an account, make sure your password is unique and strong.

7. Use your Credit Card or PayPal

It’s always a great idea to use your credit card to buy online. Actually debit cards don’t come with enough security, unlike a credit card. If someone makes unauthorized transactions using your credit card information, your bank will limit your liability to $50. On the other hand, your debit card will not offer this protection. So, you can either use your credit card or PayPal for making payments.

So, make sure you follow these tips when buying online to ensure you are always on the safe side. Hopefully, these tips will help you enjoy a safe online buying experience.

7 Tips for Buying Urns Online

In the past, purchasing an urn involved going to the funeral home, which handled the funeral arrangements of your beloved family member, and picking one from their display selection. Now, since the advent of the Internet, one can simply type in the search term “urns” in any search engine and find literally hundreds of companies selling a wide variety of cremation urns online. Purchasing an urn from an Internet company can be painless and done from the comfort and privacy of your home. Yet, with such an enormous selection of urn vendors, how does one determine which vendor to purchase from?

It is difficult if not impossible to know who is genuinely interested in helping the customer and who is out to make a buck. These 7 tips are designed to help you evaluate the companies on the Internet selling cremation urns. Hopefully the information will help make this part of the process a little easier for you and your family.

1. Research the Urn Vendor

You want to deal with a business that is experienced and ethical. Invest a little time to educate yourself about the vendor you are considering doing business with.

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Where are they located?
  • Are they members of the Better Business Bureau?
  • If so, have they had any complaints?

Look within their website for an About Us or Company page that offers more information about them. You can also contact them by phone or email and question them.

Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if they are a member and if they have had any complaints for the last three years. Members of the BBB Online Reliability program will prominently display the BBB seal on their website.

Be skeptical of vendors that do not fully disclose simple yet important information such as contact phone number, email address, and where they are located.

2. Examine Their Customer Service

Good customer service is shown by being focused on helping you instead of just getting the sale. They need to be oriented toward fulfilling your needs and not theirs.

  • Can they be contacted by phone or email?
  • Do they appear knowledgeable about their products?
  • Are they helpful in answering your questions?
  • If contacted after hours did you receive a reply within a reasonable amount of time the following business day?

It is more comforting to talk to an actual person and this should be possible during regular business hours. Contact them with any questions you have or just to see how they handle your call. You can learn a lot just by interaction with the company before you make the purchase.

You want to feel comfortable when discussing various details with them and they need to be helpful.

3. You Need a Guarantee

You want some kind of satisfaction guarantee especially with this type of product. If you get the urn and decide you don’t like it, you should be able to return it as long as it is in resalable condition.

  • Does the vendor offer a money back guarantee?
  • Do they accept returns?
  • If they accept returns, is there a restocking fee?

If your urn has been personalized or if it is custom made, then it is understandable if the company cannot accept a return just because of a change in heart. However, if it is damaged upon arrival or they personalized it with the wrong information they should replace it at no charge to you.

4. A Privacy Policy

With the amount of identity theft going around, you want to make absolutely certain your personal information is protected by the vendor you are dealing with.

  • Is the vendor’s privacy policy easily accessible?
  • Does it clearly outline what information is gathered?
  • Do they inform you how your personal information is handled?

Certainly you have heard how many Internet users are having their information given or sold to spammers. Take the necessary steps to ensure it does not happen to you.

5. Secure Payment Processing

You’ve taken the necessary precautions to ensure your credit is healthy. Don’t ruin it by making an online purchase from an unsecured website, which in turn may lead to fraudulent charges.

  • Does the website offer secure encryption?
  • What types of security measures are offered?
  • Do they have a security guarantee?

If a company is asking for your credit card information over the Internet, then it is very important that they have secure payment processing.

On the webpage where you submit your credit card information make sure the webpage url begins with https://, whereas there is an ‘s’ at the end of the http and a closed security lock at the bottom right hand side of the window. If these elements are not visible, the page is not secure.

Check the vendor’s website for a security guarantee and what measures are taken to protect your credit card information.

6. Watch Out for Hidden Charges

Most people dislike when they’ve decided to purchase an item only to find there are hidden costs such as delivery charges or other unexpected costs. Look more closely at the bottom line price and be aware of additional charges.

  • Is delivery included in the price or is it separate?
  • If buying cremation jewelry, do they charge extra for the chain?
  • Is their pricing easy to understand?

After you’ve added the items to your cart and are ready to check out, look to make sure no additional charges have been added that were not previously selected.

If you are purchasing cremation jewelry, take note that many vendors charge a lower price for the pendant and then add an additional charge for the chain. This is to create the illusion that their prices a lower whereas the total price is higher than the one that got your initial attention.

7. Multiple Payment Options

Don’t get stuck having to pay for the urn with a credit card when you would rather pay by check. Make sure the vendor has different options in place for making payment that fit your preference.

  • Do they take all major credit cards?
  • Does the vendor accept check payment or money orders
  • Can you mail or fax in your payment?
  • Are you able to phone in your order?

Most individuals will choose to pay online with a credit card, but a good number of individuals are more comfortable calling in their order or of their choice or using a different form of payment altogether.

Make sure the company can accommodate your preferred method of payment.

These 7 tips should help you to select the vendor from which you will purchase your urn from. Even then, sometimes the simple things such as visual elements (professional website appearance, user friendly interface, good product images) or resources of information will lend to the trustworthiness and credibility of a company.

In the very end what it boils down to is asking yourself: “Do I feel comfortable purchasing from this company?” and hopefully this article helped you to find that answer.

Tips For Buying Electronics Online

When buying electronics online, there are many advantages, but also a few disadvantages. Here are some tips to help you take advantage of online shopping the next time you need an electronics item.

Pricing

One of the main reasons that people buy electronics online is to be able to compare prices more easily, without having to visit many stores that may be miles apart. Online, you can compare prices on something all in the same browser. One thing that can make your price comparison shopping easier is to use price comparison search engines. There are sites like PriceGrabber and Nextag that display a product and show you the prices and even the shipping costs to your location for as many as dozens or hundreds of different stores. These sites can be a real time and money saver!

Privacy & Security

One aspect of buying online that you probably don’t need to worry about when shopping offline, is security. That is, the security of your credit card number and personal information. Never, ever give a store personal information like your social security number, they don’t need it. You should always be aware of their security policy and make sure that when you enter your credit card information, the page should be a secure shopping cart page, which will display with a lock or other secure notice somewhere on your browser window. One way to make sure that the store is legitimate and trustworthy, is to see if they display their contact information clearly, including their phone number and address. Often, fly by night sites won’t have a phone number or real address to display at all. You can also use free online tools to check the validity of a phone number and address.

Return Policy

Don’t forget to read the return policy for any online store you shop at. Many online stores can tack on a “restocking fee” of as much as 30% of the price of the item. If you have bought a TV or other expensive item, then 30% can be quite a large sum of money that you are losing. Make sure they offer returns without any bogus extra fees. The only way to be sure of the return policy is to read it carefully. Many stores may try to hide the return policy by burying the link on an inner page, only shop at stores that disclose their return policy with a clear link right on their homepage and on every page.

Shopping 101: Tips When Buying Women’s Swimwear Online

Online shopping has been a trend for quite some time now and based on recent studies, it has been found out that women do online shopping more often than men. Women have a lot of stuff in mind to shop – from books to accessories to gadgets and most especially, to dresses. Since online shopping offers the best form of convenience, ladies regularly undergo this track. However, there are a lot of women shoppers who are aware of the risks that online shopping can bring especially now that it’s very easy for opportunists to rob your identity by means of identity theft tools. This leads to accessing personal information that can later get your credit card numbers.

Buying any items online entails research and enough knowledge in transacting. Though there are a lot of reputable and trusted online stores out there, there will still be some who will take away your money. The idea of buying swimwear online (according to them) is, quite simply, risky. Finding (and buying) swimwear in a conventional store is difficult enough. But when you can’t try and fit something that catches your fancy, you can end up wasting money.

If you want to buy swimwear online, below are some of the tips that can guide you in picking the best choices.

1. Do some research online of the product you’ll buy. Should you have no idea of the swimwear you want to buy, check out Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest. These social media networks are extremely helpful in finding the right choice for you. You can peek through the accounts of your favorite celebrities, models and brands to help you pick the right kind of swimwear. Once you have a picture of the exact item you want to buy, you can scout websites for availability, colors, style and price.

2. Try to check available sizes. Be aware that online merchants and brands have different size runs. As such, make sure that you check each designer’s sizing chart. Also, remember to check which sizing the online merchant is using. Finally, if you are unsure about which size to get, do not hesitate to contact customer service. They will be more than happy to help you find the right size for the swimsuit you are eyeing. If you feel otherwise, you will end up wasting your money for an item that will never benefit you. This is something you have to veer away from doing.

3. Read the online store’s return policy. Every online store has a unique set of return policies. Some do not accept returns or exchanges. With the latter, you have to be sure with your choice. Otherwise, you will get stuck with swimwear you cannot use. If the store does accept returns, read the fine print. For example, some stores will only accept returns if the hygiene strip is still left intact. Other stores might accept your merchandise only if the item was handled improperly in the stock room. It may seem unusual but a simple thing like reading the policies can keep you away from unnecessary spending habits.

4. Consider mix and match. Buying your swimwear or any clothing online or from your favorite retail shop can be a challenge for many women simply because most people are not perfectly proportioned. Most find this true especially when it comes to curvy or plus size fashion finds. One of the great ways to fix this dilemma is to buy a counterpart. You can mix and match different pieces in order to create your own unique look. Show your creativity by picking stylish and trendy match ups that will uplift your confidence when you are wearing them.

Tips For Buying Auto Parts Online

The Internet is a wonderful place for buying many things. You will often have access to options that you never knew existed. You will also have many more choices and can often find a better deal on items online than in a brick and mortar store. One area of items that are advantageous to buy online are auto parts. With the ability to search millions of websites and many different stores, you may be much more likely to find the right part for even the most obscure type of vehicle online than in the offline world. You may also find a better price at the same time.

Here are a few tips for buying auto parts online:

Major Stores

Pretty much every major auto parts store has an online version, where you can search their entire nationwide database for parts availability, order the part and have it sent to you wherever you are. It’s highly convenient and makes it easy to compare prices. Some major chains that have sites include, NAPA Online, Advance Auto Parts, Auto Parts Warehouse, AutoZone, CARQUEST, Pep Boys and many more. Nearly all of them offer online search and shopping options. Some of them even offer a low price guarantee on certain parts and provide you with news, information, rebate deals and special online only deals.

Manuals & Auto Repair Information

There are many resources online that may help you install your auto part. Check out 10w40 for manuals and information for many makes and models of vehicles.

Auto Forums

You can find information on your make or model of vehicle as well as ask questions and get answers about repairing and maintaining it. You will also be able to talk with other auto enthusiasts. Some popular auto forums are Automotive Forums, AutoForums, CarForums, Autoforum Universe and the forums at Automotive. You may be able to get advice on where the best place to get parts is for your specific make and model. There are also forums available for specific makers which should also have excellent information on where to get parts.

Books

You can easily order any of the auto repair manuals you need online at Amazon or Barnes & Noble. This may be more convenient for people who don’t have a bookstore or auto parts store near them. The most popular and reliable publishers of auto manuals are Chilton’s and Hayne’s. Buying the manual online, you may be able to save money by comparing prices at numerous book sellers, you can use AddAll to do this.

Auctions

Auction are a great place to search for your auto parts and eBay Motors is where you will want to begin your auction search. Currently there are a staggering 546190 listings on eBay Motors under Car & Truck Parts alone. You will want to drill down to the specific category for your desired part, then try to narrow the search under that category.

More Tips

Make use of the many price comparison search engines, coupon code sites and be sure to watch out for shipping costs. Some sites, such as Autopartswarehouse offer free shipping, so be sure to take advantage of those offers.

In summary, buying auto parts online has many advantages, from better availability, to the ability to compare prices much more easily to the wealth of auto repair and maintenance information at your fingertips.

A Quick and Easy Guide to Buying Medication Online

Online purchase of medication is fast becoming a popular trend. Web-based pharmacies offer shoppers convenience and easy access even to prescription drugs. However, there is a caveat to this seemingly flawless practice. The clutter of pharmacies on the Internet makes it difficult to tell which ones provide quality medication. So the question arises: How can you tell if the online pharmacy is reliable?

Despite the warnings and the apparent dangers online drug purchase poses, it does not mean that you should avoid buying your medication online at all costs. Exercising proper caution should save you the trouble of dealing with scams, bad merchants and worse, unsafe drugs.

There are still a lot of legitimate pharmacies on the web, it’s just a matter of knowing what to look for. Here are a couple of quick tips to make your online shopping safer:

1.It’s a prescription for a reason. Unlike over-the-counter varieties, prescription medication have to be limited by the proper authorities (read: doctors, pharmacists and other health professionals). An online drugstore that respects this aspect of the medical world also deserves your respect. If the medication you need requires a prescription, make sure you get it from a place that also requires you to provide them with one.

2.Their professional opinion counts. When you have questions or concerns regarding the drugs being sold or the counter-indications that you have to know, you really should leave the answers to the pros. It is therefore essential that the online drug store offer the expert opinion of pharmacists.

3.Licensed pharmacies are the best way to go. Truth be told, not all online merchants of medication are US licensed. In fact, some aren’t even pharmacies at all. Make sure you look for this particular bit of information when considering a website.

4.Your security should be their concern. When you’ve determined that the online pharmacy is worthy of your patronage, make sure that any personal and financial information you send over is well-protected. SSL encryption on the payment page is one of the things you can look for. This feature scrambles the information that goes over the Internet so that only the intended recipient possesses the key to unscramble it. SSL encryption is especially useful for websites that conduct e-commerce.

5.Reach out and talk to someone. Whether you are doing business with an online pharmacy or any other e-merchant, good customer service and constant communication are two things that you must always look for. Look for a way to talk to an actual person even before you make a purchase. This will come in handy when you do find yourself having problems with the product or the service in the future.

Buying medication online is easy and convenient, just make sure you take the necessary precautions. Look at the sites careful and use good old common sense in assessing the legitimacy of your online pharmacy. These simple steps can serve as guidance to help you avoid potential health risks that may be caused by purchasing fake or unsafe drugs online.

Here’s a Guide to Buying Electronics Online

Buying products online is more common than ever now, as it is difficult to argue against the convenience it offers. Consumers save tons of time buying from the comfort of their homes or wherever they are. They no longer have to go down to the shop, suffering through traffic and burning fuel along the way, to make a purchase.

It has been pretty much the same with electronics, as people have gained more confidence in buying such products online, even though they were unsure of it before. A great reason behind this has been the flash sales or the discounts on certain festivals, with online e-commerce websites encouraging such sales through different campaigns. But, there are still things that can go wrong when you are purchasing such goods online, even from the best electronic stores. There are a few things a consumer needs to be aware of, to avoid mishaps in buying electronics. Some of these are listed as follows:

Make sure to compare prices

A lot of the times people are buying products online, they see a sale sign and they instantly rush to buy that item. It is possible, especially in the case of electronics that the specific product could be at a sale at a cheaper price on a different website. Thus, it can be beneficial to you to check prices on all the major, reputable online websites you can find. Additionally, there are a few websites that do offer that same functionality, so visiting them might also be an option.

Keeping track of price history

Speaking of these price comparison websites, some of them also allow you to check the price history of a certain product and to determine when it was at its highest, or when it declined the most. Using that information, you can find out the best time to buy the product you want at the cheapest rate possible.

Considering refurbished or used items

It used to be the case that people generally advised against buying used or refurbished electronics, as they did not last very long and more often than not, there were problems with the product. Such problems exist even today, but there are guarantees in place that provide the user with more confidence and faith in the product. There are also certified refurbished items from the manufacturing company itself and can be a great money saver for a lot of people.

Check for reviews

If you have doubts or fears about a certain product, they can be put to rest by consulting reviews that can be found in abundance on the website. A general rule of thumb indicates that if a review of a certain product is hard to find, it would be a wise decision to refrain from buying that product. Electronics are no different, as there seems to be an endless amount of brands releasing all sorts of products every week. The best electronic stores and websites too, provide a rating system for products that can be useful in determining the customer satisfaction, which can in turn help other customers make an informed decision.