The Internet, over the years has become a source of information, a place to meet new people and a place to go shopping! Purchasing goods online is convenient; it can be done in the comfort of your home. People living in well-developed countries can easily access these stores and pay by credit card. It is usually easy to browse around the websites, compare prices, quality of the product and then just checkout. It all sounds easy, online companies marketing themselves about how they are just a click away from whatever you need. It is in the details that the problems arise. Online purchasing has its pros and cons and weighing these will help us determine what went wrong and how we can improve it.
Easily accessible and steadily advancing computer technologies has become incredibly convenient for consumers to purchase products online, which saves time and not physically moving around. The wider variety that a consumer can choose from is also a major plus to online purchasing. A consumer just needs to choose products and pay with their card number. That's where the problems arise, most people are aware of cybercrimes and will not share their financial information to an unknown source because if it's visible to hackers, then it would be tough for online companies to recover their customer's trust and companies' reputation will go down.
Online buyers believe that the Internet is a place where most thefts occur, when an individual shares his/her financial information. Although financial security is not taken lightly and protocols are in place for such things to occur, there is always theft that takes place. Hence, despite efforts to tackle this issue, it is something that cannot be easily controlled.
There are many extra costs and risks when making an online purchase like shipping costs, getting the wrong product or the wrong size, a broken product to name a few. Although the extra charges are notified to the consumer before making the purchase, the other risks are not controlled and cannot be guaranteed. Online international shipping takes a while to be delivered; this is also one of the drawbacks of online purchasing.
The process of online purchasing is a long drawn process under the mask of its marketing cover of “Just a click away”. Every step along the way there is a problem that arises while dealing with online purchasing. Trust issues, delivery issues, Internet scams and many more!
With the major problems revolving around online purchasing, it does work in some situations. These are usually with trusted sites and products that you can't go wrong with or a detailed advertisement of the product. Buying a more expensive product like mobile phone or a new oven is not something most people will trust online sites with. These are products that need a proper evaluation before making the purchase. However, products like books, music, movies etc. are pretty obvious. You can't go wrong with the purchase of smaller products. This is something most online companies understand and tend to drift away from.
A complete overview is required to come to a conclusion about why exactly online purchasing has not grown as expected.
Convenient – One of the biggest advantages of purchasing online is its convenience. Anything you need is available online, without having to step away from the bed. It is literally present at your fingertips and a click away.
There is no need to dress up and go out, spend time and money on travelling, no need for unwanted banter. More time scrolling through stuff that you can buy.
Wider Variety – A global supermarket!! Whatever you need, in whatever size or shape. It is available or can be made available. And all you need to do is present a card number.
Credit Card Theft – Cyber Crimes is huge issue on the internet and one of the biggest reasons why online purchasing falls behind. Most people will never trust an unknown source with their personal details.
Late Delivery/Shipping Costs – As discussed earlier, online shopping is a global supermarket. This can be a problem especially with international deliveries. Deliveries taking a month to reach its destination and the numerous amount of misplaced deliveries is also drawback of online purchasing
Size differences – You are never really sure of what size or shape that will fit you and if the site is accurate or not. There is no dressing room, place to check if the product works for you or not.
Returns/Exchanges – And if it doesn't fit or doesn't work, you are stuck with it or take another week or month to exchange it. It's a hassle and really annoying when one waits a month for something and it isn't exactly what they thought it was.
From this brief overview/discussion we can come to a conclusion that the cons outweigh the pros. These are the major problems surrounding the slower progress of online purchasing. How we tackle these problems relies on how we approach them. It is important to for companies making sales online to gain the trust of the consumer rather than focusing on sales and targets to be achieved. Online purchasing is something that people still don't trust and that's where its main weakness lies. It is better if companies offer free shipping or a better service with exchange and returns of goods, and a better customer service and would attract customers to shop online. A customer service section that has a more human approach than computer generated answers. This will help the consumer connect better with the company.
It is important to understand that the idea of online purchasing is a product of the Internet. E-commerce has its advantages and disadvantages and trust issues. Online Companies should focus on how they can reduce the risk of purchasing online, the availability of product and faster delivery of products.
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