Online shopping scams were the 2nd most common type of scam in 2020, narrowly beat out by only imposter scams, also called identity theft. The Federal Trade Commision (FTC) releases information about the prior year annually. In 2020, the FTC reported that online shopping scams caused consumers to lose over $240 million throughout the year.
But what is an online shopping scam?
There are two primary ways that online shopping scams might work. The first is a bogus website collecting information and payments, while never delivering on the product or service they requested. Consumers are left with empty hands and an empty wallet, and find themselves starting over to find the furniture from their site.
When fake e-commerce stores create their domains they usually do it by choosing a fake website domain that very closely resembles the URL of the actual furniture store. If you don’t pay attention you could find yourself thinking you placed and order with 1StopBedrooms but really placed an order with an imposter.
Another common way that fake furniture stores make money is by either providing cheaply made products that break or wear out easily, or by not sending your ordered product at all. You should also keep a close eye on your shopping cart for hidden fees and costs, including delivery and insuring the furniture during its travels to your home.
Finally, some online shopping shopping scams have nothing to do with product. You might think you are placing an order for furniture, but really the other party is gathering the information you typed in when you got your order. This is really a case of identity theft, but it is still categorized as an online shopping scam.
Warning signs of a disreputable furniture retailer
Signs of an online shopping scam will be very apparent if you know what you are looking for. Beyond a similar domain to a major brand or online retailer, scam artists might also use odd site extensions. Anything other than .com or .net is likely a scam, potentially by someone in another country.
Some other warning signs you could be dealing with a scam furniture site are:
- Unreasonably low prices on all items (except clearance sections).
- Poor content obviously written by someone for whom English is not their first language. The site may also be designed unprofessionally.
- Limited or completely lacking contact options, including a failure to list the store’s location, address, or phone number. Even online stores that do not operate in your state should have at least a phone number and email address on their site.
How to avoid scams when shopping for furniture online
There are some things you can do to avoid shopping scans as you choose items for your new home furniture or decor. Avoid these activities to increase your security against scammers.
- Read reviews on Google, the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and social media.
- Look over the delivery options and prices to make sure they are reasonable.
- Use a credit card or other digital method of payment so that you have a clear record of the transaction. Report any unusual activity to your bank or card issuer.
- Read the terms of your financing, layaway, or rent-to-own agreement, if any. A complete furniture set is quite the investment, and it is helpful to be able to break it down. But make sure you’re protected first so that there are no surprises.
Stay away from furniture sites that want you to put in additional personal finance and contact information, especially if asked to do so to get a special offer. These scams are usually run by individuals who then take the information you entered and use it to steal your identity and gain access to your online and cloud accounts.
If you are looking for quality furniture without the hassle or scammers, go url https://www.1stopbedrooms.com/ buy online.