Why is the In-Store Shopping Losing to Online Shopping?
I remember the days when I would call up a friend and go shopping at my favorite city markets and malls, and spend an entire Saturday shopping. There’s this thing with girls, we can never go shopping alone. We need someone to complement us on what we try and tell us whether black is better or red. If shopping is your favorite stress buster, and every Friday you feel like your closet deserves a new addition, this piece of writing is for you.
Shopping has seen a gradual, yet strong revolution in the recent past with e-commerce sites bringing to us some really convenient and cool methods to shop. I observed that my regular visits to shopping malls and stores have substantially decreased.
And I think that is the case with almost all of us. With the convenience, ease, variety, price options, and consumer friendly behavior that online shopping offers, we really have no reasons to not buy online. My question is whether in-store shopping is losing to the impressive online shopping revolution.
What do you think? Well, if you ask me, I think buying online is the most preferred shopping idea for everybody these days. However, there is a niche where in-store shopping still rules. There are always some products that people prefer to buy from the stores. But clearly, online shopping is the king these days. There are some really powerful and compelling factors that give online shopping an added advantage over in-store shopping. When there are so many things your smartphone can do for you, why would you bother going out to shop?
Competitive Prices– One thing that instantly attracts a buyer is low prices. The pricing of a product is one of the most important factors affecting its sales. I was recently looking for a nice smartphone to gift on my dad’s birthday. I went to a few nearby stores and enquired prices of the models that I’d liked. I came home and compared the prices of the same models online.
I was surprised to see the price differences. I obviously picked up the product online. Why would I pay extra if I’m getting the exact product at a lesser price online?
Variety– From electronics, to men’s and women’s fashion, to kitchen accessories and home utilities, online stores are a home to all categories of products that you need. Not only that, you’ll find hundreds of varieties and brands to explore in one product category itself.
I doubt you get so much in one single store in your city. And, they spend well on marketing too. You’ll always find ads on websites promoting some or the other online store. Online stores have an assorted range of products to offer, and we all like it when we have more options to choose from.
Effortless Shopping– The best thing about buying online is the fact that it is so easy, effortless and you don’t have to tire yourself at all. All you have to do is scroll through products on your phone, order and wait for your product to be delivered at your doorstep. So cool.
Hiring a professional – Now, even hiring a professional can be done online. I’ve hired photographers, videographers, graphic designers and even tailors online. There are some really cool websites like StarOfService which assist you with hundreds of services. All you have to do is just tell them what you want, and they’ll give you several options to choose from.
Easy Grievance Redressal– We all have a few bad shopping experiences here and there, and online shopping is no exception. There might be a possibility that the dress you ordered online isn’t the same color that it looked, or that it doesn’t fit you properly. However, online shopping comes with really cool return policies. If you don’t like what you ordered, you can return it.
This, I rarely see happening in the in-store shopping. As soon as you enter a shopping store, especially in India, you’ll see a board that reads ‘No Exchange, No Returns’. People find it better to take the risk and buy online than buying from a store and never being able to return a product they’re not satisfied with.
Online Stores Have Built Trust– I initially felt skeptical about shopping online and had many questions in mind about the quality, durability, and other factors about online products. However, I started safe. My first online purchase was a Vega hair straightener. I already had one, but wanted to buy a spare. I ordered it and really started panicking.
But to my surprise, the product was really amazing. Good quality, durable and the exact design and color as I’d seen online. I think this happens with most of us. We all are a little suspicious before we first buy something online. And it’s okay to feel so. But, with guaranteed and quality assured products, online stores have built that trust and now I see everywhere that buying online is the first preference.
Online shopping is a complete revolution in the way people buy things. People still prefer to walk down to the store and buy a few products that they really want to be sure about. That, and if it’s an urgency and you can’t wait for two days for the thing to be delivered to you.
And, there are a few of them who have huge trust issues, and are basically stereotyped. They always prefer the in-store shopping. Barring a few factors here and there, I hardly see any reason people should not prefer online shopping over in-store shopping. After all, shopping at your home with your pajamas on and a glass of wine in your hand is always a cool idea.