Jyoti Thottam, senior writer for On Magazine, drops by The Saturday Early Show to share some tips to help you become a well-informed and satisfied cyber-shopper.
Best online buys:
- Books, DVDs and CDs: You know exactly what you're buying; there are lots of reviews; and it is easy to find rare or out-of-print books.
- Kitchen appliances: You can compare features of different brands without going to the store, and you would have to pay for shipping anyway.
- Consumer electronics: Comparison shopping can turn up great deals and some sites offer free shipping.
- Specialty clothing: Great for maternity clothes or sporting gear because you have wider selection than in many stores. For example, it is only online that the Gap and Old Navy offer maternity wear.
- Cosmetics: Color matching is still not very good on most sites, and you may not find the same selection that you would in the stores.
- Furniture: The touch and feel of these products really matter. It's a big decision and returning the item would be a nightmare.
- Jewelry: The selection is really lacking online, and it's very hard to discern quality.
If you're worried about security, stick with the big sites. And you will get less junk email if you use a separate email address just for shopping.
Use a comparison site to check the deals you are getting. Such sites include:
Coupon Sites: Sites like Dealofday.com and Funtasia.com list the "coupon codes" for many online retailers. You can take advantage of some great deals.
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