Consumer Alert: Shopping savvy! How to get the best price and avoid scams

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Our consumer alert is all about you and your online Christmas shopping.  I want to make sure you don’t make the mistakes I’ve made. These are two big mistakes I want you to avoid – falling for scammers and failing to get the best deal for the best price.

Just last week I saw a kid’s 8 inch Kindle on Amazon for 50 percent off. It was $69-99.  So I went to a great website called camelcamelcamel.

And I learned this was the price for this product ever on Amazon. But I didn’t buy it.  It was the week before Thanksgiving, so I thought Amazon would likely lower the price on Black Friday. And now the product is gone. Amazon doesn’t have any more in stock. I’ll have to pay $10 more at Best Buy.

The second shopping mistake I want you to avoid is falling for scammers. I adopted a six-year-old boy and a 3-year-old girl in 2016.  All my little boy wanted for Christmas was a pair of Jordans. I wanted to fulfill his wish, but I didn’t want to spend a hundred bucks.  I don’t spend that kind of money for shoes for a growing child.  But I found a third party seller listing a pair of red Jordans on sale for $40.  I later learned the shoes were fake when the red paint quickly began to wear off the fake leather.

“Well-known marketplaces, it’s much harder to know,” said the Yoav Keren, the CEO of Brandshield. You’ll see different sellers, and there will be those that will sell you a fake product.  Try to look at the reviews and see if others say there is a problem.”

Reviews are key when shopping online, especially when it’s a third party seller on sites like Amazon and Walmart.  But you want to make sure those reviews are real.  I highly recommend downloading a browser extension like Fakespot and Reviewmeta.

Keren also warned consumers about fake websites created to look like the real site.   Always closely check the URL.  Often thieves will change just a few letters to lure shoppers that unwittingly land on their site.  If there are extraneous letters or numbers or no padlock, it’s a fake.

Lastly, I want you to find the best deal.  Here are some sites that I love where you can compare prices.

Camelcamelcamel is the tool to use for price comparisons on Amazon. You just copy and paste the URL and it will give you the price history so you’ll know if the current deal is the best deal. And when I saw that I had the best deal on that kids’ tablet, I should have bought it.  Don’t make my mistake.  Happy shopping!