The festive season sale has well and truly begun with big e-tailers, Flipkart, Amazon and Snapdeal, along with many other e-commerce players, announcing huge discount to woo buyers. A massive advertising blitz across platforms has marked the beginning of Flipkart’s Big Billion days and Snapdeal’s Unbox Diwali Sale between October 2-6 and Amazon’s ‘Great Indian Festival’ from October 1-5.
Should you take the plunge and go in for online purchases during the sales, which promise discounts ranging up to 70 per cent? Most believe that this could be a good time to buy.
“The whole retail/e-retail industry will be conducting special discount sales for next 3 months. Customers will have lot of options to chose from, they would be able to save money, wide range of products and finance schemes,” Ameen Khwaja, CEO & Founder, LatestOne.com, a tech and mobile accessories e-tailer, told FeMoney.
Vishal Shekhri founder, CashCare, which facilitates financing of purchases, agrees. “By purchasing during the festival discount sales customers gets a wider range of products at the best possible price. It results in extra savings for the,,” Shekri, said.
However, while the offers might look good and fit into your plans for discount purchases, you need to be careful in several aspects of online buying to keep yourself safe. “While making an online purchase one should be skeptical of reviews that lack details and are too positive. Secondly, before providing any personal information or making a purchase from any website make sure that it is legitimate and not fake. And lastly, see if the site uses encryption.” says Shekhri.
Pratik Bhartia, Chief Business Officer, RupeePower, a personal finance platfrom, says amidst all the shopping buzz, one must take care of some basics when making online purchases:
- Avoid using obscure websites, which may not be known. Ensure the website is secured (URL has http://). Look for security certification on the payments page, usually provided by firms like Norton, MacAfee etc.
- Avoid making online transactions over public Wi-Fi. It is easier for hackers to access your confidential data on these unsecured networks Register for SMS alerts with your bank to get notified immediately in case of a fraudulent transaction.
- LatestOne.com’s Ameen Khwaja says consumer should make a distinction between buying branded and unbranded products. “If one is buying branded products it is ok to do online purchase, but consumers must make sure it is a reliable store that is supplying on a marketplace. If you are directly buying from online retailers then this risk is mitigated.”
- For buying unbranded, semi-branded or mid-market branded products, Khwaja says one must make sure that the supplier has credibility because small retailers sell online through large market places and as per government regulations the marketplace is not responsible. “It is better to buy branded products from large online market places and semi branded products from vertical specific e-tailers and inventory based online retailers to get assured quality of products,” he says.