Online shopping and mail order
Before you buy online
Before you buy online you may want to check your local shops to see if they can offer a good price and deliver the goods you need.
Ask around for recommendations from friends and family, or search on the internet for reviews or blogs.
Try to use reputable, well-known retail websites.
Research the online seller
For smaller or lesser known online sellers, look for a phone number and physical address and call them if you have doubts.
You should also do all of the following:
- read internet reviews on the online retailer by typing their name into a search engine
- check the seller’s policy on returns, refunds, shipping, insurance and warranties, especially if they are based outside of Australia
- check the website has a secure payment system
- phone or email the trader to ask about their goods and services.
Before you buy an item
You should check all of the following:
- postage and packaging costs
- refund and return policies
- if there is a warranty or money-back guarantee - get it in writing if possible
- if the goods are insured in transit and who pays for insurance
- any conditions in the fine print
- confirm when the item will be delivered or set a delivery date
- if the trader has a street address as well as post office box and phone number, this will make it easier to contact them if there is a problem.
You should keep a record of your transaction by printing or taking a screenshot of your order confirmation, invoice or tax receipt.
Last updated: 30 June 2015