Shopping Effectively Online

Matthew Torres / May 6, 2019

Online Shopping

Every day, you go to a website to look at products. These sites are huge, with many, many products on sale. Do you know what you’re looking for, or are you just browsing? Well, today, I want to help you understand just how you can simply look for what you want on shopping sites, and just how easily you can get what you want faster, while potentially saving you money. I will make this a simple as possible to help you understand.

Browsing Through Shopping Sites

It seems simple enough – you think of an item you want, then you go to a shopping site, and then browse through different items advertised. Once you start look for the item you intend on purchasing, however, you then have a chance of getting lost looking at other products, or buying other items that you originally did not intend to buy in the first place. This is all too common with online stores, and one of the best ways to prevent over-spending and buyer’s remorse when buying products online, is to just simply stick to your item list.

Shopping List Online

When you think about it, making a list when you go shopping in person makes sense, right? You list the items you need, and go seek them out. The good thing about that is you’ll be able to just stick with the list, and hopefully not buy anything you don’t need, and spend less. Believe it or not, making an online list for what you need is just as important. If it sounds weird, trust me, it’s not!

Making an online list of things you need to get online can make things much easier for you to spend less, and find what you need much quicker.

Creating an Online Budget

Going through the list, the next best thing you can do to help save money when shopping online, is to make a small budget chart. This can be just a simple list in a document on your computer, mobile device, or even just plain paper. Putting the total of all items combined, and including shipping, can really show a great estimate of how much you can expect to spend online, whether it be fitness tech, mobile devices, groceries, or really any kind of item online. Keeping track of each item you spend will create discipline and prevent over-spending.

Browsing Websites Properly

Upon entering a shopping site, you may see a layered list of products that may be on sale, or even special offers that the site advertises to send by email. While it’s tempting to jump right into the sales deals – most shopping sites have sales nearly every day – try to avoid clicking on those, since it may tempt you to browse through the specials first, rather than search for what you need.

The top of the main website page (usually the top center or top-right corner) will have a search bar, and you can just type in either a general keyword for your product, or the name, and clicking search should then take you to the page and section with the items you’re looking for.

Checking Reviews on Products

Getting to the product that you want is one thing, and making sure that it’s really worth it, is another thing, entirely. Checking product reviews by customers that have bought and used the products can really help you decide whether the item is worth buying in the first place. Looking at the worst reviews for the product can determine possible negative aspects of that product, whereas the positive ones can really show the product’s best attributes. Also, if there are any particular product reviews on another site that reveal more information, then those too can serve to help you decide if that product is right for you or not.

Most reviewers give honest, realistic info about the product that can help the customer with the pros and cons with the product.

Clicking Ads on Sites

An everyday occurrence on shopping sites are 3rd-party ads that you will see floating around different products on sites. These ads will redirect you to another website with the item shown in the ad, and it will lead to another product page or where you can purchase a product on another website, also taking you away from what you were look for in the first place. It’s best to be aware of any words beside pictures of products titled “third party websites” or “AD”, so that you will know what to watch out for just so you know where you’re going.

Website Account VS. Checking Out as a Guest

If you have an account associated with the shopping site, then it can make the buying process easier at checkout. Since you won’t be checking out as a guest, you can simply have payment details saved, as well as easily access shopping carts, and quickly pay for any other items during future visits to the site.

Without having an account with the shopping site, you will have to enter payment and billing information, such as address, credit/debit card info, and future visits will require you to re-enter this information.

Determine If the Site Has Great Customer Service

Sometimes, it’s best to look up reviews about customer service on a particular shopping site by other customer reviews in search engines, and on business review websites. Knowing beforehand if a company site could potentially give you problems returning a particular product is a must, and usually shopping sites will have some sort of certified approval symbols around their main site pages that you can see. If the site does not have any, then it could be trouble for you, so as a precaution, watch closely on the site you’re browsing through for these symbols.

Becoming A Pro With Online Shopping

As you follow the advice I’ve given you, there will be less time spent searching for what you want, and more money being saved, and fewer hassles you’ll face as you shop for the products you need. Be observant, be safe, and most importantly, have fun browsing!

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