Christmas Shopping Done Right

Helpful Info

Christmas shopping – it is both fun and scary. Fun because we love to spend money on others – the gift of giving. But…..scary because we want the things that we buy, the things we are giving to our loved ones, to work as promised out of the box and have the least chance of failing – at least in the short term.

Unfortunately there are no guarantees that those things will work right. Many products are made with high quality parts and the manufacturers do a great job of using reliable and high-quality parts suppliers. However, some do not – and they use the cheapest or lowest quality parts they can find, hoping somehow that their failure rates will be low. You know what happens there? The manufacturer will get what they pay for, of course!

Knowing this valuable information, how can we minimize our risk and get a good idea of those products that have the best chances of not failing prematurely? Your risk can be minimized by reading reviews of products you are considering purchasing, even when you are shopping at a brick and mortar store. If you have a smartphone, you have the perfect tool to search for reviews. That’s what I do when I go shopping!

I was just at a trade show yesterday and was looking at these cool-looking drones that I thought my grandchildren would just love. I was trying to decide which ones to get as there were several different models to choose from, all manufactured by the same company. I was waiting to hear from one of my kids to find out if it would be an appropriate gift for one of my grand-kids – you know – always good to get the parent’s blessing, right?

While I was waiting, I had the idea that I really should look online for a review of these products. Boy am I glad I had that idea! I used my smartphone to go to amazon.com and look up the reviews of these drones, and all of the drones made by this company had ratings of under 4 stars, along with tens of 1-star reviews complaining that they didn’t work right out of the box, or that it failed prematurely and parts had to be replaced.

Crazy, right? Then I checked out reviews of some other Drones on Amazon made by other companies and some of them had nearly 5 stars with hundreds of reviews (SPECIAL TIP: always look at the NUMBER of reviews, besides the star-rating – if the product has 5 stars but there are only a few reviews, take that star-rating with a grain of salt because sometimes manufacturers will give away products for free or at a greatly reduced price to get a ‘free’ review!).

Based on this information I regrettably (regrettable only because I had already spend a bunch of time looking at these drones and kinda had my heart set on getting a couple of them for my grand-kids) left the trade show and decided I was just going to order them from amazon.com.

SUMMARY: Always check the star-ratings of products prior to purchasing, read some of the verified purchase reviews from amazon.com (read some of the positive AND negative reviews so you can get both sides of the story), and then you will be able to make the best, most informed, and practical purchases that have the best chance of pleasing your loved-ones and have the least chances of failing. Thanks for reading!