How to make the most of Black Friday 2021 When is Black Friday? This year’s Black Friday Event falls on the 26th of November 2021 and is expected to be the biggest yet. Online marketplaces are poised and ready with exclusive offers and desirable discounts to attract consumers. However, with more and more unregulated, counterfeit and potentially unsafe products reaching these marketplaces, we want to help you purchase safely. Did you know only 17% of consumers consider product safety when purchasing goods from online marketplaces? That is why we have devised this checklist to help you stay informed. Discount Deals on Counterfeit Goods. Black Friday is renowned for low prices and huge savings. However, it is best to remain savvy. As a rule of thumb, if you believe the price is too good to be true, it probably is. Did you know a third of consumers would consider purchasing a counterfeit electrical good to save 30% or less? The problem is faulty electricals can have profound implications – In the UK, over 3000 house fires each year are attributed to defective or dangerous home appliances. Unsafe Electricals Counterfeit Electrical goods may contain dangerous components and may not be compliant, or safety tested. The National Audit Office (NAO) has reported gaps in their regulatory framework have made it difficult to effectively protect consumers from the new risks presented by online marketplaces. As a result, a petition is calling for change to make online marketplaces more accountable and responsible. Until then, here are some tips to stay safe and get the most out of your black Friday deals this year. Spotting a counterfeit or fake product The Office for Product Safety and Standards has released a four-part checklist to consider when purchasing from online marketplaces: • Are you buying directly from an Online Platform, or is it a third-party seller? • What do you know about the seller’s reputation for selling safe goods? • Is the seller based in the UK? • Does the seller provide a name and address for you to contact? Electrical product safety is of great importance to us. While we believe this to be an appropriate checklist, we want you to be as informed as possible. That is why we have provided these further guidelines for purchasing from online marketplaces. Recognising unsafe counterfeit products online • Price: Whilst we all want to get the best Black Friday deals possible, and sometimes the savings can be too good to turn down. As mentioned before – if it is too good to be true, it probably is. Look out for significant discounts or listings where products are considerably cheaper than purchasing them from elsewhere. • Reviews: Product reviews are a great place to understand how others feel about the product. Be careful not to fall for fake reviews; products with strongly disproportionate positive reviews are an indicator. Typically, authentic products will have varying reviews. Another indicator can be the number of reviews. Verified Purchase reviews typically mean a reviewer has purchased the product. • Product Information: Does the listing display accurate information regarding the products? Are there any grammatical or spelling errors in the listing? Look out for wording that qualifies the authenticity, such as “Genuine” or “Authentic”. Typically, reputable retailers wouldn’t need to include such information. Are the product pictures of high quality/ do they look genuine? • Payment Method: Check for Secure Payment - This can be identified by a padlock icon in the browser address bar. It is also best practice to purchase online goods using PayPal or a Credit Card. This way, for purchases between £100 and £30,000, you are protected under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. How to tell if you have purchased an unsafe electrical product • Packaging: Does the product come in its original intended packaging? Does the product include all the intended parts and information guides? (Instruction Manuals, Health and Safety Guidelines, Guarantees, and Warranties). • Plug: If you have purchased an electrical product from a UK retailer, the appliance should have a three-pin plug or charger. UK Domestic voltage should be 230v or 50 Hz. If you have any doubts regarding your product safety, contact the seller and attempt to return the product. • Compliance Marking: Does the product and packaging display regulatory markings (CE/UKCA/UKNI)? Electrical goods must display the necessary regulatory markings indicating their compliance to their appropriate market. If the certification marks are present on the packaging but not the product, the product may be fake or counterfeit. • Overheating or Unusual Noise: If your product starts to behave irregularly, then you should stop using it IMMEDIATELY and report it to the seller. This could include: The product outer casing feeling hotter than usual, the product does not work correctly (as described) or works irregularly (stopping and starting), or you may see or smell smoke coming from the product. If you believe an electrical good you have purchased is not authentic or may be unsafe, DO NOT USE IT. Instead, you should report it to the seller and request a refund. You can also get in touch with your local Trading Standards department to report the issue. That’s it! Now you have read our top tips for Black Friday 2021; you can be sure to find the best savings on electrical products and stay safe whilst doing so. To add your signature to the important petitions to increase online marketplace regulation and accountability, please visit these links: Which.co.uk- Make Tech Giants Take Responsibility Electrical Safety First- Stop the sale of dangerous electricals on online marketplaces
For more information on BLACK FRIDAY 2021 ELECTRICAL SHOPPING GUIDE FOR ONLINE MARKETPLACES talk to Cranage EMC & Safety
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