Shopping online is an awesome way to go. No lines, no stores, no traffic and for the introverts – no people! But there is a dark side to shopping online that get many people into trouble financially.
These five things could indicate a need to curb shopping online.
Buy and Return Cycle
Sure, we all buy things that don't fit, aren't as expected, or arrive broken. But if you are on the buy and return cycle you may have a problem. Impulsive shopping to fill a deep need often leads to regret and guilt for over spending. Then in an effort to recover returns are made which can have restocking fees and return shipping charges. So while the item is returned and most or all of the purchase price refunded, the shipping alone leaves you in the negative. The buy and return cycle is not healthy and indicates a major issue if it a weekly occurrence for you. If you are constantly buying and returning online purchases you could be shopping online too much.
Buy More Than You Need
Not seeing tangible goods in a shopping cart gives some people the illusion that they aren't over shopping. If you find yourself buying way more than you intended online you may need to rethink your strategy when shopping online.
You Shop Without A List
In the store or online, shopping without a list is an easy way to over spend. When you sit own to browse the online stores you should have a plan and a list. I keep a list of things I know I want to buy or research online so that when I have time I can work through them. I keep an Amazon Wish List of necessities and discretionary purchases I'd like to make so when the time comes to cash in on rewards points or gift cards I have a plan and spend wisely.
If you know you are in impulsive shopper you should stay away from online shopping unless absolutely necessary. Impulse shopping is much easier when you click to pay. Marketing is targeted to get you to buy and if you're not able to overcome impulse and ignore the marketing techniques than you need to stay away from shopping online.
You Shop Emotionally
Emotion-driven purchases are not rational purchases. If you're prone to buying when you're really happy or really sad consider staying away from those online shops during emotional times. Spending for spite only leads to more problems down the road.
You Hide What You Bought
Online or in person, if you hide what you bought or pray the packages arrive before The Hubs gets home from work you need to stop online shopping. Deceit, shame, and guilt are not healthy but they are indicators of an underlying shopping problem.
You Don't Price Check
Online shopping is a marvelous way to find a bargain but only if you look. If you're in the habit of solely shopping one store because it is convenient you need to stop and make a plan. I am Amazon Prime junkie but that doesn't mean I don't compare prices online.
You Don't Have A Budget
Spending money without having a budget is like driving a car without a driver's license. Sure, you can get away with it, sometimes for years, but eventually it will catch up to you.
If you're not budgeting you should not be shopping online and making unnecessary purchases. You cannot be successful in spending, saving, investing, and giving without a plan.
Shopping online makes it easy to overspend because you can't physically see the items in your cart nor do you actively participate in payment. Many people today have their accounts set up to pay with one-click which makes overspending incredibly easy.
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