Online shopping has now become the most popular form of digital activity for millions of internet users. Customers are forever looking for offers and discounts in the newspapers and various social media channels.
The availability of wide choices, fast delivery, and ease of refund are some of the main reasons behind its popularity. Besides, such online stores are usually available round the clock, and people can visit them at their convenience.
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Process of Online Shopping
Online shopping is a form of e-commerce where consumers can buy almost everything directly from a seller using a web browser through the Internet.
While Mobile commerce or m-commerce is a type of purchasing from an online retailer, a mobile-optimized online site or application. Online customers need to have internet and a valid mode of payment to complete a transaction.
Consumers usually find a product by visiting popular sites such as Amazon, Flipkart, or Snapdeal, or by visiting the retailer’s website directly or by using a shopping search engine. Once customers discover their products of choice, they put these items in a cart like they do while physical shopping in a normal store.
Once customers put everything in a cart, they need to checkout and provide delivery information such as the address where they would receive their consignment. After you are done with all these procedures, you only need to make the payment.
Online shopping sites usually allow payment either through net banking, credit card, debit card, or cash on Delivery (COD). Customers often receive an email confirmation after their transaction is through.
Why is Online Shopping so Popular?
When online shopping first came into existence, it was youngsters who embraced it. They simply loved the experience of purchasing their favorite items sitting at home. Moreover, it offered them wide choices in design, color, and price.
In the normal brick-and-mortar shops, this was not possible. Retail shops have usually limited choices when it comes to selecting color and design.
In online shopping, even branded products are available at throwaway prices. For example, a Hush Puppy shoe costs anything from four thousand to six thousand rupees a pair in an authorized showroom.
Surprisingly, one can buy the same pair of shoes from Amazon, or Flipkart for under two thousand rupees. This is a massive discount of more than 50℅.
Similarly, a pair of Levis jeans can cost you around five thousand rupees in a company showroom. But on an online site, the same pair of jeans is available for even two thousand rupees.
A designer sari from the ‘Meena Bazaar showroom will make you poorer by ten thousand rupees. But on an e-commerce site like Myntra, it is available for a bargain price of four thousand rupees. Isn’t it incredible?
Ease of Return
One of the major attractions of online shopping is its return policy. If you don’t like an outfit for whatever reason, you just make a request for a return. And within the next twenty-four hours, you can expect the company’s representative to collect the consignment.
It doesn’t matter how many times, you ask for a return. It’s the company’s policy to make customers their top priority.
Just compare this with a normal purchase from a showroom. Most sellers either do not allow returns or make it very difficult for customers. In some cases, they ask customers to come on a designated day or a particular time. Customers usually find it so inconvenient that they altogether drop the idea of return, and bear the loss.
I read about a case on one of the upcoming Indian social media channels where one young lady was not happy with the dresses she ordered on Amazon. She returned them no less than seven times, and on no occasion, the company ask why is she doing it. In fact, ease of return is the single most important reason why online shopping is so popular.
Convenience in the Refund
If you don’t like a product bought through online shopping, you can simply request a refund. The company won’t even ask you a question about why you want a refund in the first place. Once you request a refund.
You have the option to receive it either in your e-wallet or in the bank account through which you made the payment.
It is the normal policy of e-commerce companies to refund the amount in seven working days. Although in practice, they do it in 3-4 days. If you compare it with the refund in the normal shopping, it’s altogether a different ball game.
Most of the shops don’t even entertain the idea of a refund. You should be happy if they even agree to exchange it for another product.
Now you know why online shopping has become such a rage among people. It takes care of virtually every problem that you likely face in traditional shopping. That is why in recent years, even the leading showrooms have been getting fewer footballs while online shopping is booming.
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