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Thursday, 15 July 2010

Top internet shopping tips

Internet shopping is a great tool for just about everybody.  Using the internet to shop has loads of benefits such as access to specialist shops, you can shop at your convenience, it is often better value, especially if you use price comparison websites, there is often a bigger selection and more options available and most important to some you don’t have to drag moaning children around behind you!

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In 2008 32million people in the UK were online, that’s 65% of the total Great British adult population. Of these people 21.3 million shops online and this is predicted to grown to 32million by 2011. But how much do you know about shopping online?  We have compiled a list of our top internet shopping facts.

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  • First things first, protect your computer. Make sure up to date with anti-virus, anti spy ware, firewall and operating system. This is less confusing then it sounds and only takes 10 minutes. Try www.norton.com or www.avg.com/uk


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  • Now to find what you want. If you know the address of your website simply type it into the address bar and hit return. Easy! If you don’t know the name of the site you may need to use a search engine such as Google or Bing. Simply type in some key words and press return. You will get two types of results -


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  • Deciding what to buy. This is always the most difficult bit with such a selection available to you. But make sure you know exactly what you are buying. Read the description carefully, paying particular attention to measurements and colours.


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  • Know the Business. Make sure you know who you are buying from are genuine. Check they have an address (not a PO Box)  and phone number (not a mobile!)


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  • Read the Small Print! Make sure you read the privacy and security policies. These will tell you exactly what the company will do with your details after you have shopped. Also read the delivery policy so you know what to expect.


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  • Time to place your order! Make sure you are using a secure site before adding your details. This is very easy to do, simply make sure there is an ‘s’ after ‘http’ on the address bar, it should read ‘https’. This means your data is scrambled and so kept secure.


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  • Another easy way to make sure you are using a secure site is to check for the little gold padlock. This will either be in the bottom left hand corner or the top left next to the address bar. Most importantly make sure it is closed and locked!


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  • Once you have completed your order make sure you keep a copy of all correspondence, either print or save your order confirmation. And keep and emails and make a note of any phone calls. And keep all of it safe!


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  • Never give your bank or credit card details to anyone by email. These are often scams and should not be trusted.


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  • When you receive your new item, check it through thoroughly to make sure it is exactly what you ordered. You have seven days to return it if it is not satisfactory.


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Internet shopping is easy and safe as long as you stay aware and vigilant. You can save time and money shopping online and if you fancy it can shop at any time online so nothing stopping you shopping at 4am if the mood takes you!

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