Working with consumers and businesses to ensure a fair marketplace for all Manitobans.

Online shopping

The pros and cons of online shopping and things you should do before you make an online purchase.

Online shopping is here to stay and it's growing increasingly popular. Some recent research suggests that online shopping has overtaken store shopping in popularity. There are a lot of great things about online shopping, the major benefit being convenience. But there are some disadvantages, too. When you online shop, you can't talk to the merchant. You can't touch the product you want to buy. And you can't keep an eye on who is handling your credit card information. Here are some tips to help you and your family shop safely online:

Shopping | Online Shopping - Consumer Protection Office
  • Make sure the merchant you're dealing with is reputable. Look for references or positive reviews.
  • Find out about refund and exchange policies, and how complaints are handled, before you buy.
  • Make sure you know the full cost of what you're purchasing. On some online sites, shipping and handling costs can be greater than the cost of the merchandise.
  • Try to deal only with known websites.
  • Research a company before making a purchase. A quick Internet search may reveal if other online shoppers have had problems with the seller.
  • Before entering any financial information online, consumers are advised to make sure they are using a secure site. This ensures proper security measures are in place to protect your personal information. A secure site should have the following features:

    an icon – usually a lock shown in the locked position at the bottom of the screen
    a website address – beginning with https:// (the 's' indicates the site is secure)
For more information or if you have questions you can visit the Manitoba Consumer Protection Office website at or see the contact us page for additional contact information.