According to me one of the greatest boons of technology is that of Online Shopping. No matter where we are-at home, at work, in the salon, in the car or even in the washroom in the neighbour’s house, one click and our wants are sorted. Be it clothes, shoes, books, gadgets, bedsheets, furniture, sunglasses, umbrellas and even vegetables, anything which we can buy at a store, we can buy it online as well. And the various sites which lure us with the best offers…Oooh! Online shopping is a shopaholic’s Paradise!
To be honest, I LOVE shopping. There are probably very few women who don’t. It fills me with a sense of undefined pleasure.. the joy of choosing, the joy of feeling the soft touch of new clothes, the joy of smelling new books, the joy of adding new things to my stuffed closet.. it as if, sets me free. I don’t find shopping tiring; in fact it helps me release stress. Shopping is my shrink, as well as my best-friend. It gives me company when I want to be lonely. It makes me smile after a hard day.
And then to think of getting these joys while in the comfort of my house! This is like an added benefit to an already perfect thing!
The pros of Online Shopping are many, and this is exactly why it is almost a regular thing in most households. Some of the benefits are:
- Online shopping is so convenient. We can shop from home or from work, lying on the bed or the sofa, while watching tv, or while looking after a baby. And if we get interrupted due to some reason, we can always continue from where we left off.
- It is extremely time saving. We don’t need to roam around and look through useless things, before finding what we want. We just have to type the name of the product, and all the details are in front of us. In barely a few minutes, we can order a ton of things.
- Online shopping is so easily accessible. We can shop whenever we want, because it is open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. We can even buy goods in the middle of the night, which is not possible in conventional shopping.
- It is very easy to look for specialised items online.
- We are able to compare the prices of a product which is available with different brands, and then we can choose the best deals. But this isn’t as effectively possible in conventional shopping, where we first have to go to different stores, then decide, and then go back to the store we have chosen.
- It saves the time and cost of travelling. And considering the nature of Indian traffic, this is a BIG boon.
- Most online sites offer us the same product, which we get in a store, but at lower prices.
- Another thing which greatly annoys me about going to a store is the nagging and interference by excited sales people. Their comments about what will look good on me never seem to stop. And I generally like to be left alone when I am shopping. And when I am shopping online, I can be at peace, and decide for myself.
- There are times when I like to go all out, and buy a ton of things. And then I am faced with the problem of carrying the numerous bags back home. But with online shopping, everything is delivered at my doorstep.
- The exchange policy of online shopping sites are also very convenient. I can sit at home, and just call them for return, or exchange of any product. But with conventional shopping I have to personally visit the store for exchanging or returning the products.
But to be fair, Online shopping has its fair share of disadvantages as well, probably why conventional stores can never completely be eradicated. Because on certain occasions, going to a store is much better. Some of the disadvantages are as follows:
- Online shopping has a high level of risk. Consumers may be tricked into believing they are dealing with a reputed retailer, whereas they might actually be getting duped into sharing their credit card information, and residential address with a cheat or fraud. At times hackers might even intercept information from an online transaction, and secure private information.
- Sometimes certain goods get damaged in the process of getting delivered. The merchant has to bear the losses in most cases, and replace the product, but at times the consumer has to bear the losses. Either way this is a risky thing for both parties.
- At times not all the details of the transaction are visible to the buyer, till the final step (cost of shipping etc.)
- Not all products can be bought online satisfactorily. For example while buying clothes and cosmetics, the exact colour and texture cannot be understood online. And also when it comes to shoes and clothes, the size vary from site to site, and on delivery we find that things don’t turn out as expected.
Online shopping may have its disadvantages, but it is better suited to our fast-paced 21st century lifestyle. We can also read reviews before buying products, and can judge the quality of the product in regard to what other buyers have to say. On a personal note, I love Online shopping, and I indulge in it quite often. In fact my shopping tab might be open while I am typing this very article! So go ahead, enjoy the gift of technology, and lie back and enter a shopaholic’s Paradise with just one click!