“Consumers want the convenience and choice that online shopping provides. Many just do not have the time to trudge the streets hoping goods are in stock.” -Jo Tucker
In a modern world with almost every individual connected to the Internet, it would only be understandable for retail companies to exploit this through the wonderful ingenuity of online shopping. Considering that anything can be done online, even shopping should make the long list of activities that indivduals can do while connected to the web. Online shopping gives shoppers a unique avenue of shopping online from anywhere and anytime they want. From their standpoint, it affords them the convenience of shopping at odd hours and in any manner of dress they are in. Additionally, they can easily compare items from different stores without winding themselves with the walk, or the added gas mileage to their cars. With all these incredible advantages about online shopping, it seems like physical shopping for anything from wholesale clothing to retail wares would be rendered obsolete with this overwhelming takeover of technology. But, this is not the case as even with the unique convenience afforded by online shopping, a lot of shoppers are still wary of its many disadvantages. Just search the web, and you will find many horror stories as regards online shopping that may interest you and encourage you to take your shopping exploits to physical stores. In any case, here are just some of the disadvantages that come with online shopping:
1.) Hidden Costs
You might have stumbled on a great deal on a product you have been scouring the city all over for, so you waste no time in purchasing it. However, as you begin to check out your items, you are surprised at the hefty price you have to pay—you were sure that the items you go were on discount. Unfortunately, you did not take into account the shipping costs just yet—which would considerably rack up depending on which side of the glove you are located. While you may get that product you have always wanted, you may end up having to pay more for shipping than the product itself. Sounds like an excellent deal, right? Yeah, not really.
2.) Inability to personally check the item
Online shopping eliminates any possibility of you being able to personally check the item which is integral in the final decision-making progress. Getting to personally check the item is paramount when it comes to shopping for clothes—after all, how would you know if they fit you or not? Otherwise, this is also crucial when it comes to household items so that you would know that it is what you are exactly looking for. While some online shops are lenient about their return policies in case you have an unsatisfactory product, can you really stand waiting for them to replace the item and send it back to you again after waiting for it the first time?
3.) Diminished instant satisfaction
One of the greatest boons of physical retail shopping is that it allows the buyer to feel an instant sense of gratification. After purchase, the user is then allowed to use the product however they want and deem fit which can be incredibly satisfying. This is not the case for online shopping wherein waiting for an item can take anywhere from weeks to months depending on where you live. Sure, one might argue that it gives you that feeling of anticipating a present for yourself—delayed gratification if you may, but if you truly need a particular item, waiting would seem more of a hassle than anticipation.
4.) No means of bargaining
While bargaining with physical retail stores is hardly possible, they do have unique offers and deals that are offered exclusively to shoppers with membership cards. Online shopping does not offer you the same advantage. Additionally, if you are a loyal customer at a retail store, you may find that the staff favors you as well and this comes with benefits in some cases—benefits that translate to discounts and special prices.