Shopping directly via social media, as opposed to making the purchase on the retailer’s website, is set to be one of the biggest e-commerce and social media trends of 2020. However, despite being endlessly convenient, experts warn that this new practice is wrought with scams to swindle you out of your hard-earned bucks. Read all about the facts below.
Social media shopping scams are rife
According to a recent survey conducted by Lloyd’s Bank in the UK, as many as a third of the respondents (34 percent in total) claimed to have fallen victim to a scam when shopping via social media.
The number one reason why so many individuals are finding themselves in this situation is due to the particular payment methods that they are choosing when making their purchases. In most cases, they opted to make a bank transfer only to realise that they didn’t receive their items after a few weeks had passed.
Over half of the respondents were under the impression that bank transfers are a safe payment method to use for online shopping.
Unfortunately, this can make it easy for scammers to get hold of your details and your money faster than you can imagine. It is always safer to pay with a credit card and, if in doubt about the seller’s authenticity, to opt-out of making a payment at all… before it’s too late.
More social media safe shopping tips
Similar to regular online shopping, what is most important is to ensure that the retailer from which you are buying is both legit and trustworthy. The great news is that many of the social media platforms, including Facebook and Instagram, are putting a number of precautions in place to prevent the possibility of fake goods being sold to unwitting individuals. However, if you are really concerned about the risks, the safest thing to do would be to skip from social media straight to the retailer’s website where you can get a better feel for their security policy, what payment methods they allow for, and how they operate in general.
The bottom line
Despite experts predicting that social e-commerce is set to sky-rocket, it definitely doesn’t mean that you need to jump on the bandwagon without doing your homework.
Be sure, be safe, be online shopping-savvy! Always think before you buy.