Online shopping has become the go-to guilty pleasure for college women. Between browsing through stylish clothing websites, being able to save your shopping cart and make a user account, and having the items shipped directly to you makes online shopping the trifecta of convenience. With all the positives of this retail phenomenon also comes the negatives; mainly, the strain it puts on our wallet. There are many more wrong than right ways to do online shopping. Questions to consider before clicking the checkout button on Nastygal.com or Nordstrom.com are:
- Do I really need this, and do I have the money for it?
- Will I use this?
- Will it fit me?
- Is the shipping cost reasonable?
As savvy collegiettes, you must acknowledge if the purchase is a need or want and if the purchase will do more for you than just make you happy. Granted, it is a scientific fact that we all need some retail therapy. I know that buying a necklace from Nordstrom.com this fall was a great decision for me; I wear it all the time and it got me through midterms!
Here are some of the major Do’s and Don’ts of online shopping:
1. Do subscribe for emails from your favorite online stores to be informed on the deals and promotional codes.
2. Do use sites like Retail Me Not for free shipping codes and special discount codes.
3. Don’t be encouraged by websites like Gilt and Hautelook to make impulse buys from flash sales. Just because it’s a great deal doesn’t mean you need it.
4. Do be aware of return policies. If it doesn’t fit, you should know how to return and exchange the item for exactly what you want.
5. Don’t save your credit card information with an online account. Make sure you are protected when it comes to putting your credit or debit card digits out into cyberspace.
6. Don’t browse out of boredom. This can lead to an overfilled cart of items (like my summer bikini shopping cart on the Victoria's Secret website)
7. Do treat yourself!
Moral of the online shopping story: like shopping in real life, you need to watch out for unnecessary spending. It's so easy to type in your information and forget about the cost, but it's okay to shop online every once in a while. By all means, give yourself little rewards. Get an awesome paycheck? Aced your advanced French final? Go ahead and indulge!
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