With the proliferation on eCommerce websites, there has also been an increase in reports of fraudulent practices, and of instances where the customer has been cheated of their money. Here is a small transaction guide that will help customers be aware of what to look for, while shopping on the Internet.
1. Check Seller Antecedents: Read the seller bio, and if there is an “About Us” page, get to know more about the company or person you are buying from. Check to see if others have had transactions with this seller, and left a testimonial.
2. Get to Know the Product: Do this, especially, if it’s not something you see everyday, and is “unique” and “one of a kind”. Ask questions by directly messaging the seller, and be alert if the seller is stalling or avoiding your questions. Ask what happens if the product stops working.
3. Get a Breakdown of All Costs: If there is a discount mentioned, ask what percentage, and look if the marked price of the product is clearly mentioned. Make sure the shipping costs are mentioned separately. Check the FAQs to know if there are any costs involved, and if you will have to pay more to get the product to operate as advertised.
4. Insist on Secure Paying Methods: UPI is common now, so see if that is an option. Look for details of the payment gateway employed on the website. If it’s NEFT, ask for the company name (if it does not match the brand name). After the transaction is complete, make sure you receive an email with confirmation of receipt of payment, and details of your order. Sometimes these emails land in spam, so it is a good practice to check those folders.
5. Get All Shipping Details: Check to see if you will be informed when the product is shipped, or ask the seller if the product has been shipped. Ask for it to be shipped by a known courier company, or by India Post. Ask for a tracking number.
We hope that these few pointers will help you have a pleasant experience while shopping online.