According to recent research, nearly 80% of Americans take some type of dietary supplement on a daily basis. Have you considered joining those ranks?
Years ago, the only way to enhance your healthcare regimen was to visit your physician or stop by your local brick-and-mortar vitamin shop. Today, the internet has expanded these opportunities tenfold.
Now, it’s easier than ever to research and buy supplements online, right from the comfort of your own home. However, like everything in the digital space, there are bound to be some unscrupulous suppliers alongside the legitimate ones.
Purchasing health supplements online is a convenient, but tricky, business. Today, we’re sharing seven tips to help you shop smart and stay safe.
- Create a Plan With Your Doctor
It might be tempting to hop online and start adding random supplements to your cart. This is especially the case when the product descriptions are inviting and the price points are right.
However, keep in mind that health supplements are highly personal. You might be lacking in nutrients that your neighbor or colleague has in spades, and vice versa.
Instead of arbitrarily trying new concoctions, take the time to speak with your doctor, first. They know your medical history better than anyone else and can advise you on where to start. They’ll know exactly which nutrients you should try, as well as the qualities to look for in each one.
- Read Online Reviews
Did you know that 84% of people trust online customer reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends and family members? As long as the business has an internet presence, you should be able to check out some sort of feedback from past purchasers.
When you start comparing supplement prices, you’ll likely see the same brand names pop up time and again. Enter these companies into a Google search and see what you find. In the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), you should see the Google My Business (GMB) profile of each one.
Here, you can find information about each company, including contact details. You’ll can also read what others have to say about it. Check for any repetitive red flags, such as poor-quality products, untimely deliveries, or sub-par customer service.
- Don’t Forget the Label
With so much time and thought put into creative design, it’s easy to get caught up in the marketing appeal of certain supplements. As such, many buyers fail to read the labels on products and simply purchase based on face value alone.
In the supplement world, this can be a major risk.
Before making any decisions, read the labels on each product carefully. Make sure you understand the ingredients that are included, as well as how they work and any potential side effects you may experience. You can also check for credibility by making sure any supplement you buy is accredited by an industry organization such as NSF International.
- Research Each Website
Simply having a web presence doesn’t make a supplement brand reputable. As part of your due diligence, click around each brand’s website to learn more about the company.
A few of the most important questions to ask include:
- How long has the company been in business?
- How do they contribute to thought leadership in the industry (e.g. blog articles, white papers)?
- What types of supplements do they sell?
- How do you contact the customer service team if there are any product issues?
When you buy from a reliable company, these details are easy to find on their website. For instance, if you’re in the market for tianeptine supplements, you can find detailed information about the supplement, as well as the supplier’s brand, right on the Supplementor website.
- Look For Product Guarantees
What would happen if you tried a supplement and decided it wasn’t for you? You shouldn’t have to jump through hoops and walk on hot coals to get your money back.
Most online suppliers will offer some sort of product guarantee behind their inventory. Moreover, there should also be a simple and seamless process to handle any online returns. If the company you buy from doesn’t offer such support, then consider this a sign that it’s time to continue your search elsewhere.
- Avoid Tainted Products
Especially if you’re a first-time supplement buyer, it can be difficult to discern which ingredients are pure and which are tainted. In fact, as you browse the labels, it might seem as if they’re written in a different language!
If you have any questions at all, reach out to your physician, or contact the brand’s customer support team. They should be able to steer you in the right direction and help you understand what you’re reading.
For additional backup, keep a copy of the FDA’s Tainted Products List handy. These are potentially hazardous products that the agency explains could contain harmful, hidden ingredients. Make sure none of these are on the label you’re eyeing.
- Compare Prices
Don’t feel pressured to buy the first supplements you come across online.
Instead, create a small comparison table to keep track of which brands offer which products, and how much each one costs. As long as you limit your list to only those brands you can verify, this should be an easy way to visualize the value that each one offers.
Resist the urge to automatically go with the lowest-priced brand, regardless of efficacy or safety. Remember that when it comes to your health, price is secondary to quality. You should never sacrifice your well-being to save a few dollars.
Start Purchasing Health Supplements Online
From our groceries to our clothes, there are few items that we haven’t grown accustomed to showing up at our doorstep after a couple of clicks. Now, you can add supplements to this growing list.
Purchasing health supplements online can be a safe and effective way to enhance your daily routine. As long as you practice the seven steps above, you can rest assured that you’re buying a quality product.
Are you looking for more lifestyle advice you can trust? If so, be sure to check out some of the other articles on our blog!