The Rules of Online Shopping for Christmas Gifts

The Rules of Online Shopping for Christmas Gifts
The Rules of Online Shopping for Christmas Gifts

This year when you are shopping for Christmas gifts, you’re probably going to do some online shopping. Before you grab the credit card, take some time to learn the rules of online shopping.

Rule #1: Know Where You Want to Shop

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Stick with online retailers who have good reputations.  When you shop for Christmas decorations or something specific like that, know what site you want to check. Always start with sites you’ve dealt with before or sites that were recommended by friends and family. If you don’t recognize a site or its products, then do some research. Here’s what you’re looking for:

  • Look for any common complaints about the site. Any business will have complaints, but make sure there aren’t too many.
  • Make sure you know the site’s return policy, just in case something goes wrong with your order.
  • Check the deals the site is offering and compare them to other sites.

Have your shopping list ready, so you don’t impulse buy. It’s easy to do once that mouse is in your hand. Modern shoppers use cell phone apps to keep them up on the latest deals. Go where the deals are and plan your shopping session around those deals.

Rule #2: Know the Brand You Want to Buy

Avoid off brands if you can. Just because the product is cheaper doesn’t mean it’s a better deal. You don’t have to buy the most expensive brand of an item but look for a brand that is equally known for quality. If you’ve never heard of the brand, it’s a red flag.

If you know what brand the person you’re shopping for likes, this step is easy. They have a preference, and there is a reason for it. If you can’t afford the item they prefer, consider other Christmas gift ideas for them.

Rule #3: Keep Your Personal Information Close

Never, ever, give out your social security number out to an online retailer. There is no reason for them to have that information. Don’t send any information through your personal email. If it is a legitimate shopping site, there will be a proper checkout setup. This rule is crucial for the rules of online shopping. If you don’t know where your information is going, put the brakes on it.

Other things to do to keep track of your identity online are:

  • Use a credit card instead of a debit card. Credit cards have safety precautions in place for identity theft. Debit cards don’t.
  • Check your credit card statements regularly. Always review your statement for strange charges. If you see something odd or just plain wrong, then call your credit card company and report it.
  • Use secure web connections. Don’t do your Christmas gifts shopping at a coffee shop. Do it at home over your personal web access.
  • Don’t use the same password for everything. You hear this tip every time someone talks about the rules of online shopping.  Make sure your passwords are unique and well thought out and change them every three months.

Rule #4: Don’t Shop at Work

Yes, those big Christmas deals are enticing, but your boss is paying you to do your job. Avoid online shopping for Christmas gifts on work computers. If you want to take advantage of some of the door busters, then set a reminder for yourself on your cell phone or post a note on your schedule so you can log-on to shop at an appropriate time.

woman rules online shopping

Rule #5: Enjoy Your Shopping!

The whole point of online shopping for Christmas gifts is to avoid the stress of going out to shop. Online shopping is a fun way to get unique and possibly hard to find gifts. If you keep the rules of online shopping in mind, you’ll have a great experience this Christmas.

Merry Christmas Shopping!

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