Those big and bold Independence Day sales are here again. For instance, while Flipkart has launched ‘The Big Freedom Sale’, Amazon has come out with ‘Great Indian Sale’. Flipkart is offering 30% to 70% discount between 9th and 11th August during its Independence Day Sale. One can also avail 10% instant discount while using one’s HDFC Bank debit & credit cards. Amazon, on the other hand, is offering blockbuster deals across various product categories during its four-day-long ‘Great Indian Sale’ from August 9-12. Apart from these two, some other players have also come out with their offers.
However, while some of such deals at never-seen-before prices may seem really exciting, some precautions are required while going in for such offers.
Industry experts say that the growing size of the e-commerce industry shows that online shopping is catching on. Shopping online may provide discounts and a single platform to browse diverse product categories. However, while e-commerce has gathered steam in India, it is important to take steps to protect yourself from the risks, such as credit/debit card frauds and identity thefts that come with online shopping.
“Shopping securely is the key. A smart shopper needs to be on guard, whether shopping online via desktops or mobiles. I feel there is a need to raise awareness about the risks and safeguards that you need to ensure when shopping and doing transactions online. I would recommend that if a consumer buys from reputed and credible online platforms, he should need to look for ratings and customer feedbacks. Certain portals also have secure and certifies/ fulfilled categories that ensure the quality and viability of products. Customers can compare products and services across different websites to get better deals. While buying apparel and accessories keep in mind the latest trends/fashion as the stocks during heavy discounts are usually of last season,” says Abhishek Bansal, Executive Director of Pacific India Group and Pacific Mall, Tagore Garden.
It is also of utmost importance for consumers to choose the safest way to make online purchases. “They should check for sites starting with HTTPS; “S” means that your information is secure. Since it is the sale season online and fraudsters would also be at work, you should take a closer look at the URLs you visit to see that it is a genuine website. If possible, you should use virtual cards which do not expose your real/entire account number,” informs Vishal Maru, Head-Merchant Services, Digital Payments and Loyalty, Worldline South Asia and Middle East, a leading payments processor in the country.
Last but not least, consumers should read the SMS alerts received after a transaction is made. Any suspicious or fraudulent transaction done on one’s card should be reported immediately to the respective bank./