Gone are the days when owning consumer electronics such as smartphones was a luxury that only a few could afford. Nowadays, all you need to do is walk a couple of blocks from your place to buy these consumer electronics items!
Buying consumer electronics online through Amazon or ebay and having it delivered to your doorstep is even more convenient for those who don’t want to move out of the house. This smooth buying process, however, doesn’t always guarantee the best products.
You must be wondering why…
Manufacturers know that there’s a high demand for home electronics such as laptops, smartphones, TVs, printers and remote-control cars. As a result, there is a huge number of low-quality products. The market is literally flooded.
Getting the best products can be difficult, especially when you have so many items and brands to choose from.
So, how do you ensure that you make the best decision when buying consumer electronics?
Here are the life hacks you can use.
1. Gadgets reviews
It can be quite difficult to tell if a product is great when you see and touch it for the first time. The salespeople, as always, will do a stellar job trying to convince you to buy. Eventually you end up buying an item that could be faulty.
You wouldn’t want that to happen to you. So, what should you do?
Go online to check what other people are saying about that product. If you are already at the store, you can Google it on your smartphone and check the reviews.
If there are more positive reviews, it definitely is a product you want to take home. On the other hand, if the reviews are mostly negative, avoid it like a plague.
Manufactures or sales people won’t focus on the negatives as they are only interested in your hard-earned money. Make good use of consumer gadget reviews online. We recommend you use platforms like Meritmeter to view genuine gadgets video reviews.
With hundreds of companies in the market, competition is stiff. All the products tend to have similar characteristics, so you’re spoiled for choice.
Let’s say you are looking for a decent smartphone. You need to know some features of a good smartphones, such as good camera quality and sufficient internal memory. This makes it easier to pick the right one.
You can find this out by reading the product description provided or have the seller explain the products to you. In some cases, you may need to check the products yourself to ascertain that they have the right features. Once you’ve done this, you can confidently make your purchase.
Most sellers offer shipping services at a fee. The further you are from the store the more shipping feels you’re bound to pay. That’s how it usually works.
If you’re buying a tablet, you don’t have to worry because it’s a gadget that you can carry effortlessly. So, no shipping fees for that, except in cases where you’ve ordered it online.
You can’t always avoid shipping fees though. Sometimes you have to pay and it’s for your own good. Let’s say you want to buy a 42-inch TV. Carrying it to your car and getting inside may be a problem.
Why not allow the seller to take it to your place?
The good thing is, they’ll probably mount it on the wall and ensure that it’s working fine. This will save you a lot of time that would have been wasted transporting and setting up the TV.
4. Have the price range in mind
Checking prices of an electronic device you want to buy is a good practice. If, for instance you want to buy a specific laptop, it’s wise to check how much it costs online.
Look at the prices of different vendors. In most cases there will be no much difference in price.
When you are purchasing online it’s a bit easier because you only need to check the product description and price. If you are doing it physically, have to know what price to expect. If you find that the price is way lower than the expected figure, that’s a red flag. It could mean that the product is faulty. So, always check the price range before making a purchase.
When you have a warranty and the product you bought happens to be faulty, the manufacturers replace or repair it. Having a warranty, therefore, is something one ought to consider when buying home electronics.
There are usually two types of warranties – the manufacturers’ warranty and the extended warranty. A manufacturers’ warranty is the standard warranty that’s normally included in the buying price.
An extended one, on the other hand, is one you have to pay for to enjoy the warranty for a specific period.
Having a warranty ensures that you don’t have to buy a new product when you discover that the one you bought is faulty.
It’s usually not advisable to pay for an extended warranty because most electronics won’t have issues. Besides, you may incur extra expenses when you take your product for repair or replacement. Ensure you read the terms of the warranty before making a purchase.
6. Assess the customer service
A good shopping experience usually leaves both the buyer and the seller happy. When you start interacting with a retailer, take note of the customer service.
Are you comfortable with how you are being handled as a customer?
Good customer service involves politeness on the side of the seller and the ability to explain the benefits of the product. Sellers should also let you know if the product you are buying is the right one for your needs. If it’s not, they should tell you right away.
Bad customer service is a red flag. In most cases you will have trouble with the retailers when you take the product for repair/replacement. The best thing to do is move to the next store if customer service is poor. Alternatively, you can let the retailers know about it or leave a review on the store’s website.
You’re probably looking for a product that you can afford. One that you don’t have to save for months to buy. The good news is that consumer electronics are affordable since almost everyone buys them. Moreover, there are hundreds of brands competing for the same market.
There are cases where the price of a product you want is a bit higher than you expected. Instead of going for a product of lower quality, you can try to negotiate a price reduction. Most retailers will be happy to reduce the price by a couple of dollars so you can have what your heart desires.
Keep in mind that a low price may also be an indication of a poor-quality product. Do your homework before purchasing any product.
8. Is it a product people love?
If a product is good, many people will buy it. When you’re at the store, try to find items that have mass appeal.
Think of an item that almost everyone loves using. A good example is the iPhone. Why do people love it? It’s mostly because of its awesome features, most which competitors don’t have.
Looking for products that most people use will help you avoid doing a lot of research before finally making the decision. If, for instance you want to buy a smart TV, look at the popular ones.
9. Mark your calendar
There are times when you badly want to buy a product but you don’t have enough money for it. Instead of waiting till they have saved enough, many people settle for an alternative-mostly a product from a different brand which has a lower price.
Many brands offer discounts occasionally, especially during holidays such as Easter and Christmas. It’s the perfect opportunity for you to buy a product you’ve always wanted.
So, if you don’t have enough money to buy that camera, be patient.
10. Do a background check on the seller
Before buying from any seller, you must first do a background check on them. Not all sellers out there are legit. The first thing you should do is to check their ratings online. If all you see is poor ratings and negative comments, you should consider looking for another seller.
Go on to buy the products from the seller if you see that they have a good rating and plenty of positive feedback. If there are no ratings or feedback on the seller online, buying from them is a risky affair. Feedback from other buyers should help you make an informed decision.
11. Compare products
Buying home electronics can be a daunting task if you do not know what you are looking for. Start by defining the ideal product. You can even write down features before you start looking at the various retailers in your area.
If you are buying online this process is easier because you will do everything at the comfort of your house. Start by comparing features of the various brands and prices.
After assessing all the available options, you will remain with the product of your choice. Only then should you make a purchase.
Buying consumer electronics becomes incredibly easier when you follow the life hacks discussed in this post. If you exercise due diligence during the whole process you won’t have any issues.