HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — The holidays are right around the corner, and this year more people are expected to choose online shopping. Experts say before you hit the “Add to Cart” button there are some things to keep in mind.
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) says people shopping online has been a pattern for many since the pandemic started in March. With the threat of COVID-19 rising, many shoppers are opting out of shopping in-store.
The BBB says the increase in online shopping, also has the number of complaints from Rio Grande Valley residents rising.
“We have had an increase of people who have had problems with an order. They are filing a complaint, where they are not getting the help from the website, where they bought the item,” says Dolores Salinas, President, BBB Serving South Texas.
Salinas says there are many things to keep in mind when making purchases online to protect yourself from getting taken advantage of, or from identity theft.
For starters, make your purchases from known retailers. The BBB says most issues occur with unknown businesses, and before making a purchase, check with the BBB to see if they have a file on the business.
Make sure what you’re buying is what you’re looking for, and know the terms of conditions and delivery schedule.
The BBB also recommends using a major credit card when making online purchases.
“If there are problems with the item, or it was misrepresented when you receive it, or it’s not at all what you saw online, it’s not the quality, it’s not what you were looking for, then you can fall back on your credit card to get a refund,” says Salinas.
Salinas also adds make sure the software on the devices is up to date to protect your information, use a secure website with “https:” listed in their web address or a lock icon. Salinas also recommends keeping all records of the purchase, like receipts, gift receipts, and original packaging.
If you do have a problem with an order, visit the website first to try and resolve the issue, says Salinas. If they don’t resolve the issue then you can file a complaint with the BBB.
To contact the BBB of South Texas, click here.