Online shopping in Kenya increased during the Covid-19 pandemic. The trend is expected to continue because Kenyans realized the convenience of shopping online. Gifts shops in Nairobi have built online stores to keep up with the trend.
Shopping for gifts or any item online saves you the trouble of walking from shop to shop. However, it has a dark side that every shopper needs to know about.
Businesses do their best to protect their customers from cybercrimes. Compliment their efforts with the following safety tips.
Safety Tips for Shopping Online
1. Use your home internet. Avoid making purchases while connected to shared internet in hotels or other public places. Hackers can easily access data from internet users connected to public Wi-Fi connections.
2. Download an anti-phishing toolbar. Anti-phishing plug-in tracks down fraudulent sites and alerts you if you visit one that seeks personal information under false pretenses.
Avoid opening any emails or providing personal information to every site you come across, no matter what they promise.
The anti-phishing toolbar will alert you of fishing attacks, but you must proactively protect your data.
3. Avoid debit card payments: Even when shopping on trust sites, a debit card should be your last payment option.
Most gifts shops in Nairobi have a mobile-payment option for online and offline buyers.
PayPal is also safer than a debit card. You can claim your money back if the online shop does not deliver the item or delivers a sub-standard item.
4. Track your statements: How are you spending money online? Check the charges on your statements. Ask for a printable invoice or receipt.
Some online shops may dupe you on the prices. Confirm that the listing price is the same charge on your invoice.
Check if the invoice has any add-ons. Sometimes online shops recommend complementary products and automatically add them to your invoice.
Contact the online shop immediately if you find any issues with the invoice.
The Do’s of Shopping Online
1. Create a shopping list
Impulse buying is real whether you shop online or offline. Do not blame yourself. We all fall for it sometimes.
Without a shopping list, you always end up with more items in your cart than you need. Every offer looks urgent and inviting.
You only realize when the items are delivered that some items could have waited.
2. Do a background check on the e-commerce platform
Look for the company’s details on the website, such as the physical address, helpline number, and email address.
Genuine sellers provide contact information for customers to reach them fast in case of issues with their orders or payments.
Avoid buying from online shops with scanty information.
3. Read customer reviews
Previous buyers can help you predict your experience with an online gift shop.
If customers complain about its products or services, you may not be the exception.
Some shops display their reviews and ratings, but some hide negative feedback.
You have a reason to worry if no buyer has experienced any hitch with the purchasing process.
Check the store’s response to negative feedback. Sometimes buyers exaggerate their experience.
4. Use discount codes
Gifts shops in Kenya offer regular discounts on specified items. Referrals may also attract discounts.
You can save lots of money when shopping with coupons. However, if you are shopping for a gift online, do not compromise the quality or type of gift to save money.
Stick to your shopping list but apply coupon codes, if any.
5. Read the terms and conditions
Read the product warranty and quality description thoroughly.
Check the manual to identify any special care that the product requires.
Read the payment terms and delivery process. Check the website’s commitment to data security.
Avoid websites that share customer data with third parties.
Go through the return and exchange policy, and avoid online shops that do not allow you to return or exchange the product
6. Opt for cash on delivery
If you are purchasing from an e-commerce portal for the first time, opt for cash on delivery.
You will only pay for the item if it meets your quality expectations.
The online shop should be open to receiving the item back if it does not fit the online description.
Many online shops in Kenya have added this option to build their customers’ confidence.
The Don’ts of Online Shopping
1. Do not click on random links
You will come across links that promise great deals on items on search engines, email, or social media.
Avoid clicking on such links. If a trusted shop sends you a link on the email, copy and paste it into your browser.
Some links lead to fake websites while others save your data for marketing or fraudulent activities.
2. Do not fall for every deal
Some deals sound too good to overlook. We advised you earlier to start with a shopping list.
If the price is too low compared to the competitor’s prices, you may be looking at a fake item or a cheap copycat.
Some online shops offer outstanding discounts to attract and keep buyers. However, such discounts are for specific products or seasons.
3. Do not forget the fine print
Some shops hide essential details about the product in the fine print.
Read and ask questions before purchase.
4. Do not ignore safety alerts
The search engine or anti-virus software may alert you of unsafe websites or gateways.
Do not dismiss such alerts. Read the description of the warning or error before taking further action.
5. Do not reload a confirmation page
In case of an error with a confirmation page, avoid reloading it. The site may charge you several times if you keep reloading.
Claiming your money back is a process. You are safer if you go back and check if the site received the first payment.
6. Do not shop with your personal or work email
Create an email for online shopping and interactions. Sellers may crowd your inbox with deals and offers until you miss important notifications.
A separate email protects your data if you land on a hacker’s website.
Do not save any confidential information or passwords in your shopping email.
Online shopping is fun, convenient, and safe if you pick the right platform. With these tips in mind, explore online gifts shops in Nairobi and enjoy the ease of online shopping.