1. Always save copies of your orders and receipts from online purchases. Many stores will redirect you to a page after you've submitted a purchase detailing anything that was bought, customer information, the prices, etc. You should either print a duplicate of this or save a duplicate to your computer in case any issues arise before the end of the return period. Be sure to save any emails about your items' status or correspondence with the company regarding your orders, too.
2. When shopping online, always try to keep in mind the cost of shipping. Many sites offer free shipping on purchases over a specific amount. In the event that you do have to pay shipping, make sure that it is going to match your budget after you've added everything for your cart. Possessing a full cart only to find out you are unable to afford the shipping is never a fun experience.
3. If a company has a newsletter, register. Often, companies will give sneak peeks, special deals and coupon codes to people on their mailing list. However, be careful. You don't want to sign up for every company's newsletter or you'll soon be buried under endless emails. Only join a company's newsletter if you really like their products and services and would use a promotion code.
4. Before buying coming from a new online retailer, perform some research on them. Check online reviews from other customers to see the actual way it handles things like customer service, shipping, and its overall buying experience. You can also look at the BBB to determine if it has any disputes and whether those disputes were resolved professionally. Try contacting the company via email and phone number, if it's posted to ask questions about its business before you buy anything.