Is it difficult for you to get to a store? Do you have language difficulties when you shop? In the USA, you can buy nearly everything you need online. Learn how to use the internet to shop online for food and other everyday items. Learn how to be safe while you shop online.
How to shop online for the things you want
You can search on the internet with the name of the item you want to buy. But you might end up on an unsafe site. Learn how to shop online and which are the safe websites to use. You can usually trust familiar names and famous websites. But you may want to use lesser-known websites because they have special food products, for example. So, before you pay anything to a new website, check to see if the website is safe.
You can find out if a shopping website is safe by searching online. Type the name of the website and then the word “reviews.” You can read what other shoppers think about that website.
How to pay when you shop online
If you have a credit card or a debit card, it is easy to buy online.
- It is safer to use a credit card than a debit card. Credit cards are not connected to the money in your bank account. If the card number is stolen, the thief cannot get into your bank account.
- If you do not have a credit card, you can still buy online. You can use a prepaid card. You can buy a card that has numbers like a credit card. There is a set amount of money on the card. You can add more money or get a new card when the money runs out. This is a very safe way to buy online because you do not have to give any personal financial information when you pay for things. You will pay a fee when you buy or put money. Compare fees on different to get the best deal. Find recommended prepaid cards from Consumer Reports.org.
- You can open a Paypal account and pay online from there. You need a bank account or credit card to buy online with a regular Paypal account. Or, you can get a Paypal prepaid Mastercard without a bank account.
Receiving and returning goods
Shopping online is convenient because everything is sent to your home. You have to be careful because you don’t get to test the product before you buy it. Check before you buy that you can return it if you keep the receipt and original packaging and have not used the item. Also, check to see what the return cost policy is. Some websites offer free returns, while others will make you pay for shipping.
How to shop online safely
Your personal information is sometimes called data. You never need to give out important personal data, such as ID numbers, bank numbers, passwords, or your address on social media sites. To keep their users safe, social networks have privacy settings you can use to make your information (data) safe.
Look at the top of this page at the URL (the page address that starts https://). You will see a little padlock symbol next to the address. When you are on a shopping site, look to see that the site’s name has the padlock next to it. Make sure the URL site’s address starts with “https”, instead of just “http”, and has a padlock icon in the URL field. This indicates that the website is secure and uses encryption to scramble your data so it can’t be intercepted by others. Also, be on the lookout for websites that have misspellings or bad grammar in their addresses. They could be copycats of legitimate websites.
It is safer to shop on your own computer. Shared computers, like the ones in a library, might have a virus that you don’t know about. You also might be sitting next to other people who can see your personal information. If you need to shop on a shared computer, make sure that nobody is watching you while you buy something. Make sure to log out of your account before you walk away. If not, somebody could able to steal your information.