For some, sitting on your bed eating ice cream in your pajamas and shopping an unlimited number of stores and boutiques is a dream come true. The allure of shopping anywhere you want from your bedroom is now a reality. From one end of the world to the other, you can whip out a card and buy from anyone.
Along with this fantastic option comes a danger of extensive debt loads. When you can buy that easily, it can add up quickly. Here are some tips to avoid online shopping debt while still enjoying your pajama shopping:
Treat your favorite sites like the real thing
It may sound obvious, but treating your favorite website like you would your favorite shop in town is a good idea. If you know you can’t enter your favorite store without spending money you don’t have, you generally don’t go in. Do the same for your website favorites. Only visit if you know you have some money available in your budget, or you are looking for something specific.
Beware the impulse buy
Impulse shopping is even harder to avoid online, because the website is in control of what you see and when. You can be sure they spend plenty of cash to figure out what images, ads and products will make you send things to the shopping cart. As such, turn on a pop-up blocker and skip over the offers if they don’t relate to your specific shopping needs.
Shop secure sites only
Online debt can be accrued through theft as well. Make sure you are sending your information safely by looking for the little padlock in the left hand corner. This is not the only thing, but it is the minimum you should do to feel safe. Using a card that will protect you in case of error is also a great idea. Some credit cards offer far better protection than others so look into that when you sign up.
Demand the best terms….or move on
Online shopping is so big now that you can afford to be picky. For example, if they don’t provide free shipping, move on. If they give you discounts but they are still more expensive than the next guy, move on. Demand the best deal when you shop online the same way you would in person. Why pay more than you have to?
Online shopping debt is not something that has to be a mystery. Protect your accounts, shop safely by sticking with secure accounts and remember you are not using Monopoly money. If you do these things, you will be in great shape online.