Online Shopping is a form of electronic commerce which allows consumers to directly buy goods or services from a seller over the Internet using a web browser. An online shop evokes the physical analogy of buying products or services at a bricks-and-mortar retailer or shopping center; the process is called business-to-consumer (B2C) online shopping. In the case where a business buys from another business, the process is called business-to-business (B2B) online shopping. The largest of these online retailing corporations are flipkart, Amazon.com, and eBay.
Shopping online is convenient.You can easily visit their website, find the product you want and buy it. It’s also convenient because you don’t need to wait for the store to open.If you work irregular hours or are very busy, then you probably don’t have the time to visit the store. Shopping online allows you to buy things without hurting your schedule.
Online stores must describe products for sale with text, photos, and multimedia files, whereas in a physical retail store, the actual product and the manufacturer’s packaging will be available for direct inspection.
3. Price and selection
One advantage of shopping online is being able to quickly seek out deals for items or services provided by many different vendors (though some local search engines do exist to help consumers locate products for sale in nearby stores). Search engines, online price comparison services and discovery shopping engines can be used to look up sellers of a particular product or service.
4. Infinite choice: Shelf space in a brick and mortar store is limited, which means that your variety of goods is limited.Not so with an online store. Plus, if you don’t see what you want in one store online, you can simply move on to the next one – you’ve got the power to do that.
5. Discreet Shopping
Physical stores often make it difficult to buy certain items. There are many instances of this, and sometimes you might feel embarrassed for no reason.Shopping online gives you privacy because you won’t have people looking at you while you shop. Not only that, but the receipts are usually made so that no one will know what you bought.
6. 24/7 Availability
Online shopping stores are open round the clock of 24/7, 7 days a week and 365 days. It is very rare to find any conventional retail stores that are open 24/7. The availability of online stores give you the freedom to shop at your own pace and convenience.
1. Fraud and security concerns
Given the lack of ability to inspect merchandise before purchase, consumers are at higher risk of fraud than face-to-face transactions. Merchants also risk fraudulent purchases using stolen credit cards or fraudulent repudiation of the online purchase. However, merchants face less risk from physical theft by using a warehouse instead of a retail storefront.
2. Lack of full cost disclosure
The lack of full cost disclosure may also be problematic. While it may be easy to compare the base price of an item online, it may not be easy to see the total cost up front. Additional fees such as shipping are often not be visible until the final step in the checkout process. The problem is especially evident with cross-border purchases, where the cost indicated at the final checkout screen may not include additional fees that must be paid upon delivery such as duties and brokerage.
Privacy of personal information is a significant issue for some consumers. Many consumers wish to avoid spam and telemarketing which could result from supplying contact information to an online merchant. In response, many merchants promise to not use consumer information for these purposes.
4. Diminished Instant Satisfaction
Unlike buying at retail stores, you are able to use the product instantly after you buy it, which can be satisfying. However, online shopping requires patience to wait for the item to arrive at your door step about 2 to 3 days or even longer depending on the location you’ve ordered it from.
5. Lose the Tactile Experience
When you shop online, you don’t have an opportunity to touch and feel items you are considering purchasing.Because you cannot hold the item and look at it in your hands, you don’t always know the quality of the product. Sometimes the description or photograph of the product might be of something slightly different. As a result, you might end up with an inferior-quality item.
6. Refunds/Returns Disputes
If an item comes damaged or not as described, you will want to return the item or be refunded your money. Depending on where you purchased your item, there can be different policies for refunds and returns; this process is tedious and is prolonged since you would have to ship back the item and wait on the buyer to refund your payment.