Online Shopping: the future of retail?

Online Shopping: the future of retail?

In today’s society consumer demands have increased, time management has decreased and whoever has the service at the lowest price makes the sale. Online shopping allows customers to purchase items on any website, on any platform and at any time.

It can be seen as a convenient outlet for customers to buy what they need when they can’t visit the physical stores in person.

But what shopping online does not have is the traditional hands-on experience, meaning that an individual may not know everything there is to know about a particular product, or where it is coming from.

Buying online increases the risks of an item being delivered damaged, the wrong size, wrong item or not arriving at all. These risks are the reasons that many deter from ordering online and turn to physical retail stores.

Gorgeousness Boutique, Bathurst

Owner of Gorgeousness boutique in Bathurst, Bronwyn Abberley, says that some of  her customers “come into the store, try it on and then order it on an external  website. When they finally receive the garment, [in some cases] it has been wrong and they end up coming back, disgruntled, and buying it from my boutique anyway.”

Gorgeousness Boutique is one of the few businesses in Bathurst that doesn’t have a online version of their store.

“I was going to open a website but I didn’t want to compete with myself. [Online shopping] has affected me significantly but not enough to close down the store…I’m lucky to have many loyal customers,” Abberley says.

Apparel retail is one of the many forms of consumerism that keeps traditional retail alive, along with food and accessories.

These items require an individual to ‘try before buying’ and to feel completely satisfied with their purchases.

So what does the future of online retail hold?

“When it comes to consumer electronics, that initial experience that you get in a store: getting to play with it is insignificant.”Ruslan Kogan, founder and CEO of Kogan Technologies says.

“What is more significant is the reputation of the brand and the independent reviews available all over the place…You will know much more about a product by putting the model number into Google and reading reviews than any experience you might get in store.”

Electronic goods, including digital music, is a significant factor in keeping online retail alive. The market place for electronic goods online, especially in Australia, is here to stay.

COVER PHOTO COURTESY OF ABC NEWS

PHOTO COURTESY OF GORGEOUSNESS BOUTIQUE FACEBOOK FAN PAGE

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