It’s no secret – online shopping is huge. Ecommerce sales have doubled in the past 7 years, and they’ve grown so much they’re actually hurting stores in the mall. Which will end up being a benefit to us consumers – hooray for more sales! (Well, as long as the stores stay in business). With the plethora of free shipping offers, I decided to do all of my fall shopping online this year. Spoiler alert: I didn’t end up following through with it. I found there were some things that I just needed to try on first. However, I did end up doing most of my fall shopping online this year, so it wasn’t wholly a failure. I made a purchase at three different retailers and didn’t pay for shipping once, one of my requirements for online shopping always – no exceptions. Here are a few things that I liked and some that I didn’t like after my mini online shopping spree:
Liked: Delivered to my door. Time is a very precious thing, and I currently have very little spare time to go browse the mall. I liked that, after only a small amount of time spent online (and in my own home), my order was shipped directly to me. No having to leave the house!
Didn’t like: There was something wrong with every order. Yes, out of my three orders, all three had something wrong with them. I received a different size than what I had ordered for one item, another item had a tear in it, and another one was a pair of boots that were scuffed before I was even able to try them on. All of these issues were things that wouldn’t have happened had I shopped at the store – obviously, I would have chosen the correct size and passed over faulty merchandise.
Liked: The extended aisle. This, next to convenience, is perhaps the biggest upside of shopping online. There’s so. much. more. to choose from! Hundreds of items that retailers will never be able to fit in their stores are available online. I was able to find a pair of boots–now deeply discounted–online that I had admired last year and were no longer available in any stores.
Didn’t like: The returns process. I made two returns and I didn’t technically have to pay for either one, but I did have to make a special trip to the post office for both of them and also pay for one of them before being reimbursed. This inconvenience nearly, although not quite, made up for the convenience of not having to make a trip out to go shopping in the first place.
Liked: Less temptation to buy unnecessary extras. I went straight to the category of clothing on each site that I wanted, without being sidetracked by a window display or point of sale promotion.
What are your opinions of online shopping? After my little experiment, I’ve decided to maintain a mixture of both online shopping and in-store shopping, just depending on what is most convenient for me at the time.