March 2011 - Internet Purchasing Dos and Don'ts
While buying on the Internet is really not very different than any other buying, it does have a few things to watch out for.
Of course the first things to watch out for are the same things you should pay attention to any time you make purchase.
- Make sure you are getting what you think you are
- Confirm the product is appropriate for your need
- Here are some criteria a vendor should probably meet:
- You have positive recommendations from folks you know who have purchased there
- You have purchased there before (without issue)
- The business should have been in operation for a while (at least a year?)
- Return policy is clearly stated, are returns refunded or credited to your account?
- Shipping costs (to you and for returns) are stated and acceptable
- Shipping time is acceptable
- Vendor accepts your preferred payment choice
- Vendor has a 1-800 number for sales AND problems
- Vendor has a positive reputation at review sites
- TANSTAAFL -- if the price is to good to be true, then it is probably not true
- For auction sites:
- Is there a sign up fee?
- Is the seller a company or an individual?
- What is the history of the seller?
- What is the condition/state of the product?
- What are the shipping details?
- What if the product does not arrive? Or arrives damaged?
- What warranty?
- Is it really an auction?
An interesting new family of "auction sites" have appeared. Here are some examples.
Penny Auctions - claims to share winning stratedgies