The Downsides of Online Shopping

Online stores and deliveries have revolutionized the way we do our shopping. Instead of going to physical stores, all it takes is a press of a button on your phone. Using online connections, mobile devices, and credit cards, the entire process can happen with a few taps on your phone. Online shopping offers amazing convenience, a wider array of choices, and unbeatable prices.

However, there are some downsides to online shopping. In some cases, it may be better to purchase physically your items instead of ordering them online. Here are some reasons to go ‘old school’ with shopping.

A Lack of Guarantee

The main issue of online shopping is the lack of guarantee that what you ordered is what you receive. There are thousands of stores online – and they all want your money. They can entice you with promos, deals, discounts, and freebies but make no mistake. They want your money and will do anything to get you to press that ‘purchase’ button.

This includes (but not limited to) false advertising. The photo on the sales page may look great, but when your order arrives at your door, you may be in for a massive disappointment. A common way for stores to renege on the deal is by using lower quality materials or counterfeits. Worst-case scenario, the package may not even arrive at your door because the seller never sent one out.

A Lack of Safety Nets

Another issue with online shopping is the risk of damage on your order. At any point in the delivery process, from the supplier to your door, anything can happen. Bumps, drops, and water damage may occur, thus ruining your product before you can even use it. What happens then?

If you purchased on physical stores, your item has a guaranteed warranty in case of any damage. This gives you the ability to get a refund, a free repair, or a replacement of the product in question. These purchases have receipts with guaranteed time periods where the store will replace the item without any question. For online stores, you may not have such a guarantee. Sellers may find excuses not to live up to their end of the bargain. This leaves you with a broken item, a charged account, and nothing to show for it.

Even if the seller agrees on a replacement or refund, it can take a long time to process the papers. It may take weeks or even months to see any of your money back.

A Lack of Privacy

When you buy from a physical store, you bring it with you from the mall to your home. There is no middleman that handles the delivery. You yourself are in charge of bringing the product to your doorstep. For online delivery, this can become a more complicated process. From the seller, the delivery to the shipping center, to local shipping crew – a large number of people can know information about you and your package. There have been instances in the past where delivery personnel harass recipients due to the contents of their package. Sensitive items such as adult purchases or embarrassing items can create issues since they have your information.

Privacy is also a concern because of delivery personnel themselves going to your home. When ordering an item online, people often write the times and dates where they are available. To potential thieves, this means they can also know the times when you are not at home. This gives them the opportunity to enter your home and take valuables without you even knowing.

A Lack of Security

How often have you ordered an item online and have it delivered to your home while you are away? Most cases, the delivery crew would simply leave the package at your doorstep. This makes it easy pickings for porch pirates and thieves around the neighborhood. What is stopping them from stealing your package right off your door?

Since there are no witnesses, people may assume that their package never arrived. However, even with theft, the charge on your credit card is still there. This leaves you with nothing to show for it and an expense burning through your account.

Packages are nothing close to inconspicuous.

A Lack of Instant Gratification

One of the most common reasons for purchase is impulse. Impulse buying has been a time-honored tradition for many. With online stores being available 24/7, it can be hard to resist peeking. Before you know it, you have a few items already on your virtual shopping cart.

Here comes the problem – you have to wait a long period before you actually see the item. Even with advances such as drone delivery, it can still be very hard to feel ‘instant gratification’ when shopping online. You have to wait, and during that waiting period, you may lose interest in the item already. When it finally arrives, you may not even want the item entirely. Yet, you still have to pay for it.

With physical stores, you see an item you like, you pay for it, and you receive it instantly. No waiting periods, no long delivery times, and best of all, you get to use it straight away.

Some Final Words

Buying online is fun – you get to pick from countless stores to get what you want. However, the process is not perfect, with plenty of things potentially going wrong. While buying at retail stores near you may seem old fashioned, it is a far simpler process. It goes from store to you instantly. The purchasing process ends just like that. No hassle, no waiting, and no complications – if the store has it in supply, you get it right away. It takes more effort on your end, but the positives still outweigh the negatives.

For those who hate waiting long periods for their items to arrive, purchasing locally can be a great option. You also have the option to see, hold, and test out the product before buying – something that is impossible with online stores.

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