10 Tips for Shopping Online for Clothing – for a safe and pleasant transaction

Here are 10 simple yet essentials tips, which if followed correctly, should help make your online shopping experience a safe and satisfactory one!

As many women would say, shopping for clothes can be lots of fun! We’ve all had our doses of retail therapy in the past… and with the vast selection available online to us ladies, shopping for clothes on the Internet can be even more fun.

Shopping on the Internet however can be a tricky business, especially if we do not take our precautions and make sure everything is in order. One need not fear though! With a little care shopping online can be a breeze! This article will walk you through ten tips, which if followed correctly, should help make your online shopping experience a safe and satisfactory one!

1. Although shopping for clothes online is a fun experience, it might prove to be a little bit tricky at first because you cannot actually go into a changing room and try on the items before buying them! If you find yourself wanting to buy from a new store, one which you have never bought from before, you might be a little unsure about the size to choose. Most reputable online fashion store do have size guidelines which you should definitely consult to help you choose the right size; however what I suggest doing is the following. When buying items online from a new store take it easy: buy one item first! Once the item arrives you would have an idea whether you have made the right choice, or maybe you need a smaller or larger size. That one item will give you an idea of the sizing of the particular store, so after having ‘tested’ the sizing go ahead and buy more!

2. I like to describe the feeling I get of a website as the same feeling I get when I meet a new person. There is usually either good chemistry or otherwise. It’s really the same with website and online stores. What kind of feeling do you get of a website? Does it look professionally done? Does the design and navigation make your online shopping experience easier… or is it terribly difficult to find what you’re looking for? Is there an ‘About Us’, or a ‘Company Info’ page? These elements usually give you a general feel for a website, and give you hints on whether to decide either to trust the website enough to purchase from it, or move on.

3. Whilst browsing around the website, look out for signs and logos which may indicate certificates of security and reliability which the website might hold. Common names to look out for are VeriSign and BBB.org (Better Business Bureau).

4. Before actually making the purchase take a note of the websites customer service email and/or telephone number. Making sure that you have somewhere to refer to queries to should you need to, before actually making the purchase, will help you put your mind at ease.

5. Check the store’s privacy policy and customer service page before making the purchase. It is important that you are aware of the store’s return policies, delivery charges and shipping times.

6. Make sure that you use a credit card when effecting purchases online and not a debit card! This is a vital practice which you must make use of. Debit cards don’t have the same protection as credit cards when it comes to limiting your liability for fraudulent use. You can easily dispute a charge made on your credit card, however it can take a very long time for you to recover funds taken fraudulently from your debit card.

7. When you arrive at the check-out page, which is usually the page where you are asked to enter your details and payment information, check your browser’s address bar and look out for the extra ‘s’ after the usual ‘http’. For those of you who feel a little bit lost, your browser’s address bar is usually located towards the top of the screen and contains the address of the website you’re currently visiting. Have the website start off with ‘https://…’ means that the website you are on is secure.

8. Whilst checking out, after making sure ‘https://…’ is present on the address bar, look down towards the bottom right-hand corner of your browser and pack sure the padlock icon is present. This is an essential part of checking whether the website you are on is secure and encrypted! If the padlock icon is missing, stop the transaction right there and move on!

9. As soon as you complete you online transaction print out the page which usually shows up as confirmation of the order you have just placed. Besides being good for your record-keeping, this print out will contain important elements of your transaction (like order number and date) which you would possibly need to refer to in the future. If the page that shows up after your complete your transaction does not contain such information look out for a confirmation email which should arrive in your inbox shortly after you have completed the transaction, as such an email would usually contain the important information and details. Make sure you print a copy of the email and save it… do not hit the delete button!

10. Finally, ensure that the Internet browser you are using is kept up to date; check for and download the most recent version. If you carry out a lot of Internet browsing it is also a good idea to clean your computer with free online software that detects spyware; an efficient program which you can make use of is Spyware Doctor.

So there you have it! Ten short but essential tips which can help you make your online shopping experience a pleasant one.

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