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Best Online Electronics Stores for 2017

What is the best store to buy discount electronics online? We reveal our top picks

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Online Electronics Store

Making a big technological purchase like a TV or a computer can be intimidating, so finding the best online electronics store can help save you money for those big purchases. Sometimes it is easy to think that technology is something for which you just have to shell out big bucks. However, bargains can be found even for the most expensive electronics and knowing where to find a reputable online electronics store can help you save a bundle.

The best electronics stores are a very useful tool when searching for any item, especially computers and TV's but some have different strengths and weaknesses. Here is a compilation of the electronics retailers to help you to score deals on electronics. But first, take a look at some of the factors and features to keep an eye out for while browsing.

Online Electronics Stores: What to Consider

Best Online Electronics Store

  1. Amazon
  2. Newegg
  3. ThinkGeek
  4. BestBuy
  5. BrandsMart USA

When you are buying electronics online you have to have some level of trust that your payment information will be used responsibly, your purchase will be delivered with care and your order will arrive in time. Here are other important things to consider.

  • Do they have a good reputation of responsibility and timeliness?
  • What sort of shipping fees will you encounter? If you find a product with large shipping and handling costs, you might find it for cheaper on another site. Sometimes a vendor will try to trick you by claiming lower prices for a product and then making up for it in shipping fees.
  • Does the site have comprehensive customer reviewing sections?
  • Read the rules that a site has for its vendors. It doesn't directly apply to you but a site that keeps a close eye on its vendors is more likely to avoid issues involving unethical online sellers.
  • Does the site have a mobile app?

The Best Online Electronics Stores

Amazon Review

  • Pros
  • Trusted reputation
  • On-time delivery and tracking
  • Free shipping on many items
  • Huge variety of vendors and products
  • Feedback on sellers
  • Cons
  • Not tech specific site
  • Shipping may vary depending on vendor

Amazon is a well-known and useful tool for finding comparisons on all types of products, including electronics. Sellers from near and far flock to Amazon to advertise their goods and unlike eBay, you won't be forced to outbid a competitor. As for comparisons, it is extremely effective.

It clearly lays out all the details including full technical specs, customer reviews, and comparable prices. It's hard to find an e-commerce site as trusted as Amazon with the full range of products. What's more, the newly added "one-click" buy button facilitates a speedy check-out process.

Amazon is personally our favorite shopping website. Sometimes the big company is not the best choice but in this case, we cannot help but recommend it. It has a vast variety of products to choose from and even features exclusive deals.

Newegg Review

  • Pros
  • Second-largest online-only retailer
  • Appliances and parts available
  • Low prices
  • Accepts multiple forms of payment
  • Extensive customer support
  • Cons
  • Limited selection on some appliances
  • 15% re-stocking fee
  • Slow order processing

Newegg is a unique site that allows you to not only buy products but also specific parts, as well accessories and gear. Opposed to other top shopping sites like Amazon which vary in their offerings, Newegg is specific to electronics and technology which is helpful to anyone who wants to make a quick tech purchase without having to search through irrelevant search results. Or as noted, you can buy parts alone for building devices.

The fact that they offer the ability to buy only specific parts is very appealing to tech savvy individuals who want to do some hardware building of their own. Plus it is just a feature that sets them apart from the scores of other online shopping sites. Aside from Amazon, this is one of the largest online retailers around. The only con that really stands out as a possible deal breaker is the 15% re-stocking fee, but that's only if the product is not damaged or defective.

Newegg is a unique site that allows you to not only buy products but also specific parts, as well accessories and gear. It's important for you to know that in 2010 a vendor on the site did sell several counterfeit Intel processors, but they were replaced with real ones once the scandal was discovered.

ThinkGeek Review

  • Pros
  • Large selection of special interest, collectible, and hobby products
  • Great rewards program
  • ThinkGeek Action Shots Program can earn you free gift cards
  • Great customer service
  • Cons
  • Shipping can be expensive
  • A 15% restocking fee may apply to some returned items

ThinkGeek is a physical and online retailer that may seem a little unique compared to the other online electronics stores in this review. Founded in 1999, ThinkGeek offers products that cater to computer enthusiasts and 'geek culture.'

Online you can find clothing, electronics, scientific gadgets, computer peripherals, toys, collectibles, books, candy, and drinks. You can find cool products from popular video games, television, and movies. They also have a dedicated kids section.

ThinkGeek runs a points reward system called Geek Points, where you can earn rewards for buying more products. For every $1 you spend you earn 10 points which can then be used for interesting rewards such as gaming gear, speakers, lamps, bags, and clothing.

One of the downsides of ThinkGeek is their shipping policies. It's a flat $8 shipping rate for all products, which is a little pricy, but you can receive free shipping on orders over $75. In addition, you may have to pay a 15% restocking fee on certain items if you plan on returning them.

ThinkGeek is a great store if you or someone you know enjoy 'geek culture' or love technology. If you're looking for home appliances, you'll find a better selection elsewhere.

BestBuy Review

  • Pros
  • Large selection of TVs, computers, and home appliances.
  • Knowledgeable sales force
  • Price Match Guarantee
  • Geek Squad Tech Support
  • Device Repair Tracking
  • Cons
  • Some customers experienced poor customer service
  • No live chat or email customer support

Best Buy is a national consumer electronics store and has earned several accolades over the years such as "Company of the Year" by Forbes and listed in Fortune magazine's "Most Admired Companies."

Best Buy retail stores offer audio/video equipment, electronics, computers, software, appliances, and other technology products. At Best Buy Mobile you can find the latest and greatest cell phones from all major providers. If you can't find what you want in-store, you can certainly find it on their website where they offer an even wider selection of products.

The Best Buy online store offers a number of great discounts for students, daily and weekly deals, free shipping on orders $35 and up, free in-store pickup, and a price match guarantee.

An interesting feature of Best Buy's online store is the Best Buy Ignite section, where you can find unique and innovate electronics from lesser known companies. You can find drones, wearable tech, solar generators, and more.

Although Best Buy has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, there are over 7,000 logged complaints about Best Buy on their website mostly regarding customer service. With Best Buy, it seems that you can only contact them the old fashioned way if you encounter a problem. You can call or post on their website forum, or reach out to them on Facebook or Twitter.

BrandsMart USA Review

  • Pros
  • Engaging customer service department
  • Flexible payment options
  • Large selection of products
  • Great prices on home entertainment products
  • Free local delivery and assembly of appliances
  • Cons
  • Shipping out of state is very expensive

BrandsMart USA is one of the leading consumer electronics stores in southeastern United States with 9 retail stores in Florida and Georgia. Despite this, their online selection of electronics and appliances rivals that of Best Buy or Amazon.

BrandsMart USA offers a huge selection of televisions, home appliances, audio and video equipment, furniture, cell phones, computers, mattresses, and much more. If you live near one of their stores you can receive free delivery and assembly on appliances you ordered, or free in-store pickup for everything else.

Customer Service is where Brandsmart USA really shines. Their website provides the phone numbers of all their stores, a messaging system, an updated list of product recalls, comprehensive FAQs, a video series on their popular products, and an in-store service center. They also have a very friendly, engaging community manager on their social media platforms. If you have a question or problem, you can expect a thorough response quickly.

One BrandsMart USA's downsides is that they are only located in Florida and Georgia. You can still buy their products online and have it shipped to you, even if you live out of state, but you can expect to pay high shipping fees.

Electronics Store Online Recap

If you are about to buy something like a new LED TV or a new notebook computer don't resign yourself to the idea that you are going to have to walk into a brick and mortar store and pay whatever prices they list. There are plenty of online electronics stores that can help you make an informed decision so you don't make an uninformed purchase.

Best Online Electronics Store FAQs

Is it safe to buy electronics online?

The concern that fragile objects like electronics may show up in pieces after being shipped to you from far away is valid. Or you might be worried that you won't get the product you wanted. Either way, these are always an issue when buying products online. First, you should only buy from trusted sites with a good reputation. Little known or sketchy sites are more likely to send you something faulty than reputable online businesses.

Many electronic stores facilitate buying and selling between vendors and shoppers. In this case, the vendors themselves should be scrutinized, not just the site. To do this, check the user reviews. If the response is overwhelmingly negative you may want to avoid this vendor. If there is an acceptable mix of negative and positive reviews it is probably a decent vendor. However, accidents happen even when dealing with legitimate online stores. Always check a sites return policy in case you need to get you money back for a broken device.

Before you buy, be sure to check the specs. Take a look at the technical specifications to be sure that the page you're looking at is the one you want. After you've made a purchase monitor your credit card spending. Whenever, you put your card information out there you should keep an eye out for any fraudulent charges.

When should I buy online and when should I use a local retailer?

Shopping online has so many conveniences and benefits, that you many never want to step into an actual electronics store again. However, there are still some situations where you might need to head down to your local department store. For instance, certain items like cameras need an in-person experience before you decide to buy. You can't test out different brands when buying online.

Shop online when:

  • You know the exact product you want or you've had experience with the product before.
  • The pricing is better.
  • Your local retailer does not have your product.

Shop in-store when:

  • You're not sure which brand you want.
  • The pricing is better.
  • You don't want to wait for a long shipping process.

If you do find something online that is competitively priced but you aren't sure if you'll like it when it's right in front of you, go down to the actual store and test it out. You can always figure out which product you want in the store and then buy it online once you've decided.

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In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.

Advertiser Disclosure

In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.