The fear of online shopping never gets old in our country. Credit card problems, identity theft, fear of quality, lack of trust…the list of concerns continues.
But are they for real?
Do you really have to keep away from online shopping because of these fears?
If truth be told, we believe it is the time that you dump this dippy list of concerns into the ‘bin of misconceptions’. So let’s start plucking your fears.
Misconception #1: “I’ll lose my money”
This has been the one thing stopping people from shopping online. But, once you know certain facts, real facts, you will know that your money is going nowhere, unless you sit around doing nothing.
Suppose you paid for a product, online. But the product never reached you. What can you possibly do when this happens? Either you can weep thinking about the money you lost or, you can act. Approach the credit card company and tell them what happened. They will investigate the matter and you will get a refund.
There is another fear Indian customers face- transactional errors. Imagine, you went through the online payment portal and completed the procedure. The money is deducted from your bank account but somehow is not showing in the shopping portal. It is just a transactional error. Wait for 3-7 working days or contact the shopping portal. The error will be resolved and your money refunded.
Misconception #2: “They will steal my financial information!”
After ‘fear of losing money’, privacy concerns is something that drive people away. “Do these websites store my credit card information? Do they sell my personal information to others?”
In reality, these online shopping websites do not handle any information related to your credit cards or bank accounts. Third party credit card processing companies called payment gateways handle everything related to the payment procedure. The process is carried out, on the fly, though a secure encrypted channel. Some online shopping websites, however, store your e-mail address, phone number and address to provide a better service to you in future. So, there goes your another fear about online shopping!
Misconception #3: “I don’t have a credit card. I cannot shop online!”
You don’t have a credit card? Well, you don’t need one! You can make payment for whatever you buy online using debit card, net banking or even your mobile phone. Most websites even allow cash-on-delivery facility.
The fact is, making payment using your debit card is even safer than using credit card. That is because; you need to enter additional passwords while using debit cards. ‘Verified by Visa’ and ‘MasterCard Secure Code’ helps banks to identify a genuine transaction. Therefore, no need to wait until you get a credit card. Start shopping today!
Misconception #4: “Shopping online is expensive.”
Do you think online shopping website sell products at a higher price? If yes, it’s time to change that thought! Actually, most online shops sell products at a rate well below the market price. It’s possible because they buy products in bulk and when you buy products in bulk, you get them cheaper.
That said, some online shops impose shipment and handling charges for the product on the customer. This can add to the grand total you have to pay. Sometimes, you might get lucky as this extra cost will be borne by the online shop.
Misconception #5: “I will get average quality products.”
Even after understanding everything about payment methods and privacy issues, people might still turn their back on online shopping. Reason, not sure about the quality of products.
Today, online shopping websites are trying to win trust of their customers. They can do this only with good quality products and service. The products are added to the shopping catalog only after thorough quality check.
In-case you are not satisfied with the quality of product you receive; you can use the return policy of the shopping portal. You can either get your money back or get the product replaced. Good quality products and service decides the popularity of an online shop.
Misconception #6: “They are always late on delivery”
Normally, the online shopping websites delivers the product you ordered within two to five working days. This is the case if you are living in major cities. If from outside city, it could take up to 7-15 days, depending on the shipping service and how remote you are from closest town. If you are thinking about sending gifts, make sure you give enough time for the shopping portal to ship the product.
Misconception #7: “I will use Cash On Delivery for gifts.”
“Gift is something given voluntarily, free of cost.” If you are thinking about sending a gift to your friend and making the payment using ‘cash-on-delivery’ option, it is never going to work.
The person receiving the product is supposed to make the payment in COD. In this case, your friend is the receiver. She will end up paying for something you bought her as a gift. As a result, COD is not available with most of the gifting portals.
Once you get your fear for online shopping out of the way, you might even find it addictive. For people living in cities, online shopping is definitely a boon. You don’t have to drive through the congested traffic to buy some gift for your friend. Just login to an online store, search for what you need and the product will be delivered at their house. It is as simple as that!
Now it is your turn. How do you buy gifts? Do you prefer to buy it online or do you like it the old way? Did this article help you dump any fear? Share with us!