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Gifts Reviews: Who Can You Trust?

  Gifts Reviews:   Who Can You Trust?

When making gift choices, whether for Christmas

, birthdays, weddings, or any gift choice for that matter, it's wise to not trust the claims of the manufacturer or the seller. After all, their goal is to make you a customer so they only promote the best features of their product. This is why it is vital that you dig deeper and find out what real buyers have to say.

No matter the occasion, choosing the perfect gift at the perfect price can be stressful. You can reduce the stress by doing your homework as to quality, price, and buyer satisfaction. Trusting the reviews of buyers just like you may be your first step to make the right gift choices.

For example, I just completed a web search for exercise equipment and for exercise dvd courses. The choices were nearly overwhelming. However, even with all the choices, I was able to narrow the field by looking for product reviews from actual consumers.

In the process of finding that perfect Christmas gift online, or a gift for any occasion, be sure to read everything on the sales page before you buy.

The key questions I ask are:

What is the shipping offered by the seller? Some sellers offer free shipping to your door but do not offer free return shipping if you are not satisfied with the product. This can be a significant amount of money out-of-pocket if you find that the product does not live up to the claims.

What is the money back guarantee, if any, and how can I get my money back if I wish to?

I recently purchased a digital television antennae with built-in rotor that looked great on the website but was flimsy junk that stopped working within a half hour of installation. The product cost $37 with free shipping to my door but return shipping cost $17 so I was out $20 when all was said and done. Not a wise purchase because I did not look for consumer reviews before buying.

There are a number of web sites these days that offer reviews either from buyers or experts. Two of the most reliable review sites are Consumer Reports and Consumer Reports focuses on testing so they cannot possibly cover every product on the market. That said, they are still worth checking out just to see if the gift you have in mind has been tested by their experts. Consumer Reports is a highly respected source because they do not sell products and are not paid by the manufacturers.

Amazon, on the other hand, is a seller of gifts. While they make a profit if you buy through them, they are a highly trusted online seller because of their unbiased customer reviews.

Right now their focus is on the best Christmas gifts and they have many customer reviews posted on products in nearly every category you can imagine. In fact, you will find reviews of nearly every product Amazon offers. These gift reviews are from real people and Amazon posts both good and bad reviews so you can be assured you are getting accurate opinions, not watered down versions.

If you do not want to use sites like Consumer Reports or Amazon, you can always just surf the web for a particular product by name and hope you can find sites that offer customer gift reviews. Many major retailers include consumer reviews of products they sell.

Finding sites that offer dependable reviews can be a time consuming process and you can easily get lost in the many advertisements that appear in search results. But, be persistent and you will eventually find the information you seek. If you cannot find more positive reviews than negative ones, it is obvious that you should not buy the product unless it is a name brand that you trust.

Do not allow your emotional need for the product overcome your common sense. Think of customer reviews as your friends giving you some good advice and make your buying decision based on that advice.

Taking this one step further, you can use customer gift reviews to shop for the product in your home town instead of buying on line. You will be armed with the information you need to make a smart buy. You will be able to focus on price and the store return policy without worrying about shipping and handling costs.

Customer reviews, whether for Christmas gifts or other occasions, can be your best tool for spending your money wisely.

by: Shona
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