1. Make sure your purchase is eligible for refunds and warranties
E-Commerce platforms like Lazada and Shopee usually protect customers with their 15-day return policy.
If you are not satisfied with something you have bought, you can return the item and ask for a refund. You can choose to have either money refunded to your bank account or as store credit.
Note that some overseas sellers will give you a refund without accepting returned items or low-priced goods.
2. Know the merchants and their reputation
Check if the store has good ratings and reviews, how long they've been selling on the platform, and whether they ship items on time.
Trustworthy sellers are given a 'Preferred' label as a sign of endorsement if they have a long history of excellent reviews and quality products.
3. Look at the product description and reviews
A product with mostly positive reviews are a fair indication that it is a good product. Customers who include photos in their reviews help you notice whether the product received is the same as what the seller advertised.
However, do not ignore negative reviews as they may tell a different story, buying experience, or perhaps a fine print that most customers did not notice.
4. Contact the seller if you have questions
If the Q&A section doesn't sufficiently answer your inquiries, having a chat with the seller probably will.
If you want to know more about the product you're interested in, good sellers will respond to you quickly. Some might even tell you whether shipping is delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
5. Lowest prices are not always the best ones
Most buyers will look for the cheapest listings possible as prices are lower online compared to retail stores.
For some listings, the price difference seems too good to be true. If that is the case, there is a high chance that the product might be damaged or not genuine.
6. When in doubt, buy from official stores for quality
Now that you know how to have a safer shopping experience online, it's time to start your shopping spree: