Online shopping is beneficial not only to the young but also to seniors. First off, shopping online saves time and is more convenient than traditional shopping — which may be impractical for many seniors.
Plus, let’s not forget about multiple discounts and fantastic bargains found online. Another perk of online shopping is that our seniors with limited mobility can avoid the hassle of long checkout lines, crowded aisles, and packed parking lots.
However, seniors may have difficulty adapting to technology and the Internet, making online shopping seem like a tedious task for them. So in preparation for the upcoming crazy sale season, we have compiled a list of eight online shopping tips for seniors. Read on to shop safely and grab as many deals as possible this Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
MORE TO EXPLORE: How to Protect Your Parents From Online and Telemarketing Scams
Online Shopping Tips for Black Friday
Nothing beats online shopping, especially during sale seasons, holidays, or weekends when you no longer have to deal with lines of people when checking out or feeling crushed in the crowds.
For seniors, some of the top online shopping perks include convenience and giving them more options with all of the online stores and shops available. At best, you or your elder parents can easily enjoy online shopping right from their sofa.
Here is a list of online shopping tips for seniors to experience the best shopping experience of the year’s biggest sale!
Blend Into the Technology
Let’s face it: getting familiarized with technology can be challenging for all seniors. But again, online shopping can become a breeze once they blend into the digital world and feel comfortable using smartphones or laptops.
If you’re reading this with your parents in mind and want to make it easier for them to shop online, spend 1-2 days teaching them basic computer skills or introduce them to shopping apps with seniors-friendly features.
Go for Trusted Sites
Getting hooked on websites with colorful graphics and attractive deals is natural; we all fall for these sites. So eliminate the sketchy shopping sites, consider compiling a list of reliable websites selling real-deal products and offering secure checkouts before you or your parents hop on the crazy sale wagon!
Stay Safe in the Cyberworld
The sad reality is our seniors seem more vulnerable on the Internet, making them a target of scams and offenders. Creating a strong password is one of the top concerns when staying safe in cyberspace! Yet, keeping track of multiple dangling passwords can be frustrating.
To address this, you can use secure ways to record passwords safely. For example, you can use a password manager app or a notebook to record their passwords. Wonder how to create an uncrackable password for yourself or your parents? Follow the guideline below:
- At least eight characters
- Mix lowercase and capital letters
- Use special characters in between (i.e., %!#@%)
- Use different passwords for different sites
- Change passwords regularly
Most importantly, remind your parents to avoid downloading random software since these programs can potentially contain viruses that could steal personal data. Above all, always use trusted wifi networks and never send money to strangers over the Internet.
MORE TO EXPLORE: Easy Ways to Teach Seniors Proper Use of Computer
Don’t Skip Research
These days, e-commerce retailers like Amazon are the best places to shop on crazy sale days like Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Of course, everything has pros and cons, and online shopping is no exception.
While you or your parents may be hooked on the idea of grabbing everything they want in just a few clicks, they may also become lost in tons of attractive deals and goods available amidst the crazy sale! At worst, you or your elder family members may fall victim to online shopping scams if shopping without caution, with estimates pointing out that elderly Americans have lost $1 billion in online scams annually! To avoid the headache and scams, research and verify the transparency of online shops, as well as take a closer look into the reviews and additional information about your or your parents wishlist items.
Stay Skeptical of Extreme Deals
Of course, extreme deals and discounts are common during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Nevertheless, it is the perfect opportunity for scammers to trap unaware individuals, so if you or your parents spot a deal that appears too good to be true, trust your guts and move on.
Ridiculously cheap items can either be used, counterfeited, or faulty. So again, it is crucial to be selective of extreme deals and only shop on reputable e-commerce websites.
Make Payments With a Credit Card
In the world of ever-changing technology, data breaches can happen to anyone! However, making payments with a credit card is likely the safest way to protect yourself or your parents while you are on your shopping journey. If your or your parents credit card is stolen or compromised, the bank can help reverse transactions, leaving credit scores unaffected.
Check Return Policy
Keep in mind that all trustworthy retailers will offer a flexible return policy, allowing customers to exchange faulty items until they are satisfied with their purchases. But it’s not the case for all sellers.
Since it is practically impossible to check the items thoroughly online, chances are, you or your parents may receive defective products. If you shop with questionable online retailers, then you cannot send the products back due to the retailer’s non-existent return policy. So remember, it’s essential to check online stores’ return and refund policies before purchasing.
Stay Away From Email Spam
Email is a channel with a lot of potential for engaging and staying connected with customers. Considering it is an excellent way for all customers to stay updated with promotions, flash sales, or sale seasons — all in one place — receiving blast emails is very common these days. At the same time, the risk of spam emails is also increasing for seniors, causing them to become victims when curiously clicking on the attachment links. What is the solution? Set up spam filters for your emails and unsubscribe from newsletters and notices from companies you no longer want to receive.
If you have questions about shopping for seniors or any topics discussed here, connect with us and learn more.
At 12 Oaks, our team of caring professionals is dedicated to keeping residents safe, engaged, and connected to their families and friends while leading fulfilling lives. 12 Oaks senior living communities are an ideal place to enjoy the encore season of life.
For questions or to schedule a personalized tour, don’t hesitate to contact us.
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Searching for senior living help? At 12 Oaks Senior Living, we would love to learn more about your unique needs and the opportunity we may have to help you meet them. Our blog is one of the valuable resources we provide to inform and encourage seniors to lead fulfilling and thriving lives. Contact us today to schedule a visit.