Today, shopping online is extremely normal. We can even do the grocery shopping without even leaving home. In Chile, during the first half of 2018, 57.6 million purchases were made online, where the largest number of transactions were made in the services market.
Another important fact is that more than 65% of the Chilean population reviews services and products online at least once a week. "The eCommerce revolution is just beginning in Chile. We are seeing an incipient cultural change, which democratizes access to more products at better prices, wherever you are located in the country," said Alan Meyer, CEO of Mercado Libre Chile.
At Bonoboss we believe that in Chile the trend of all purchases being made online in the future will continue and shopping centers and physical stores will become showrooms rather than stores.
However, before making purchases online, we know that you have to be informed and not get carried away by a nice description or a low price, that is why we leave you these 6 recommendations that you should take into account before buying nationally or internationally.
1) Read product and page reviews
Although many times there may be skepticism about the comments that exist on the different Internet sites, it is good to have a reference of the experience of real people about a product or service. You must review the good, the bad and the ugly before making a decision. Many times there are reviews of the complete website and not only of the products, in this way you can also know what other people think of the service provided, if they solve the problems or not, if they ship on time or if they have a fluid communication channel.
2) Check if the company or supplier is easy to contact before buying
Well, imagine for a moment that you make a purchase on the website you are visiting, but it turns out that you have had a problem, will it be easy to contact them so that they will solve it for you so that you can receive your order? Or they will send you the product and if you do not receive it you will have to send 10 emails so that they respond to 1 with a copy paste. Generally, if it is your first purchase, it is advisable to carry out communication tests, such as asking questions by email, WhatsApp, Skype or other channels provided by the online store. This way you will know what you are dealing with in advance.
3) Make sure the product is not disposable
Many times, tempted by the price, we choose cheap products that promise to be BBB (Good, beautiful and cheap), however after receiving them they do not last a week and have no repair, causing loss of your money and in many cases damage to the environment and ecosystems that you cannot imagine.
It is important that our consumption is responsible and we generate a sustainable community, we must become aware of this before it is too late. At Bonoboss we encourage you to put aside 1-use products or those that cannot be repaired and opt for products that have a long useful life, and hopefully they are biodegradable or sustainable.
4) Know the trajectory of your provider and ensure your experience
Whether it is a product or service, check how many years it has been in the market, where it is positioned, if it sells its products exclusively online, or is it a supplier that also sells to clients with established and specialized stores in their area. Check if it has a distributor in the regions, or if it has distributors in Chile in case it is from abroad, and look for reviews of them, their service and their products. This will give you an idea of how seriously this company takes its business.
5) Check how easy it is to enforce your guarantee or make a return
Many times when we have a problem with the product, enforcing the guarantee is very tedious, and many times, even after having a bad experience, we decide simply not to face the problem and simply never opt for that brand again. This can be avoided, know the manufacturer's warranty policy and find out whether or not it has a specialized technical service. Remember that the more intermediaries, the longer it will take to receive an answer and solve your problem.
Some stores do not offer your money back, others do, find out about this before making the purchase. What happens if the product you bought does not meet your expectations or is extremely different from its description? Will they force you to exchange it for another, or will they refund your money?
6) Know the purchase limits on international orders
Throughout the world, and different in each country, there are maximum purchases for imports to go through a complex customs process. In Chile, all orders under $30 US FOB value ( Incoterm , which means Free on Board, that is, the value of the product without freight cost) do not pay taxes, that is, they will be blown through customs, however, all orders over $30 must go through additional customs processing. Some companies offer to pay the taxes in advance, that way they make the payment to customs and expedite the process.
Similarly, in Chile, all orders over $999 US (FOB) will require a customs agent for their release, taking even more time, it is important that you prepare all the documents in advance to speed up the process. On the other hand, you should consider that it will increase your costs.
7) Find out about shipping times
For national purchases, we recommend reading reviews and reviewing the company with which the store ships.
For international purchases: Day by day we see that free shipping gains more strength, however we must take into account that it is very likely that the shipping times are not the most expeditious. If you have time to wait, then make the purchase and arm yourself with patience to receive it a few weeks or months after making the purchase.
On the other hand, if you choose a store with a good reputation, with reviews that support it, and offers to deliver your shipment in a time that is acceptable to you, then it deserves a chance. There are stores that ship for free internationally and it only takes a couple of days to deliver your order in Chile. Incredible or not?
You must bear in mind that for international shipments, delivery times are always extended from December 10 onwards.