In 2016, for the first time, shoppers bought more online than in physical stores, and that number is still trending upward in 2017, proving that the Golden Age of online shopping is indeed upon us.
Here are 5 tips from vPost to ensure that you shop safer and smarter during this hectic Black Friday period:
1. Use Familiar Web Sites
While searching for the online merchant you’re interested in, only click through to websites featured on the first few results on Google or websites featured on our US merchants page and vPost EDMs. This is to prevent you from misspelling the website’s name (a .net instead of a .com, for example) which could lead you to fraudulent websites created by cybercriminals.
2. Look for the Lock
Look for https: rather than http: at the front of the URL. Websites that use https has the icon of a locked padlock in the URL bar or bottom of the web browser and are secured because they employ SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) to encrypt any information that is distributed online, such as your credit card or other login details. This way, your personal data is kept safe and private.
3. Get Savvy about Wi-Fi Hotspots
Waiting for that friend who’s always late at Starbucks is never fun, 2 latte sips and 3 Instagram stories in, you’re browsing your favourite merchant site and you see that the Booties you’ve been eyeing on is 50% off! TAKE MA MONEY!!!!
But hold up! If you’re connected to a public Wi-Fi, always adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your phone/laptop. If you must use open Wi-Fi connections, connect to a virtual private network (VPN) before you check out those bad-boys.
4. Get Your vPost Address Ready
To avoid the 2 most dreaded words during Black Friday - SOLD OUT, ensure that your US vPost address is stored in the merchant’s check-out page. When it comes to checking out, think SSS - swift, seamless and secure.
Not sure why you need a vPost US address? Check out why direct shipping might not be your best choice here.
5. Pre-Black Friday sales
Some Pre-Black Friday sales have already started! Keep a look-out for promo codes and discounts in our weekly vPost EDMs and blog posts. Especially if you want to get your hands on new releases or share a common size with the majority, your favourite t-shirt might be sold out by the time actual Black Friday rolls around.