Shopping for holiday decorations? Don’t fall for this online retail tip
The holiday season is only a few weeks away, which means many are buying decorations. The stores have already started playing Christmas jingles and their decorations are in full force. Tap or click here for 15 Great Vacation Deals On Amazon To Buy Now.
If you don’t want to brave physical stores, you could look to buy Christmas decorations online. Research suggests that the average American spends around $ 270 on decorations each year. Much of this comes from online shopping.
Unfortunately, online advertising isn’t always what it claims to be. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is warning everyone to be on the lookout for the holiday shopping scams that are already doing the trick. Read on for ways to protect your finances this holiday shopping season.
Here is the backstory
Trying to get a head start on holiday decorations or looking for sales online after Halloween can be a great place to kick off the holiday shopping season. But it would help if you were careful where you find things to buy.
BBB warns that fraudulent advertisements claiming to have fantastic holiday decorations for sale appear on social media and online search results. A common theme with these scams is that the articles advertised are not what they appear to be.
You will see photos of holiday decorations that are beautiful with amazing lights and features. Best of all, the decorations are sold at surprisingly low prices.
BBB explained how the scam ends: “You make your payment and wait for the decorations to arrive. However, when your package is delivered, the product is nothing like what you saw online.
“In many cases, this is a poorly made miniature version of what you thought you bought. You now have no way to return the items or receive a refund. In fact, you probably won’t even be able to contact the company.
That is why it is essential to know who you are buying items from online. There are more precautionary rules to follow.
Stay Safe This Holiday Shopping Season
The BBB has a few suggestions to make sure you don’t become a victim of these types of scams. Here are a few tips:
- Research before you buy. Before purchasing any holiday gifts or decorations from an unfamiliar website, consult with the company. Make sure it has working contact information. This includes a phone number, email address, and physical address. Search other sites for business reviews and scam reports. You can always search for business ratings and customer reviews on BBB.org.
- Beware of offers that sound too good to be true. Keep in mind that large decorations involving special lights and technology are expensive. If you find any surprisingly cheap items, it could be a scam.
- Don’t make quick purchases through social media. Fraudulent advertisers can track your buying habits from social media ads and target you with specific products that they think you’ll fall for. Plus, don’t make impulse purchases when scrolling through your feed. Research articles and companies first to avoid getting ripped off.
- Always use your credit card for online purchases. Credit card companies allow you to dispute fraudulent charges, a resource you might not have if you buy items with a debit card or gift card.
Want to keep an eye out for the latest scams out there? BBB has a Scam Tracker that keeps you on top of things to watch out for and gives you a way to report a business that looks like a scam or fraud. Check it out here.
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