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The Best and Worst of Online Shopping

Online shopping is more popular than it has ever been as millions of users flock to the Internet daily to purchase everything from groceries to fashion. Upgrades to e-commerce technologies are coming fast and often, bringing with them great improvements to the online shopping experience, changing the way we shop altogether. But of course, alongside these amazing advances come increased risk and a quality of customer service that is increasingly less human. So what are the the best and worst points of online shopping that you, as a customer, should be aware of?

The Best

Perhaps the most obvious advantage of online shopping is its convenience. The days of having no choice but to leave your house to shop are a long and distant memory and now, thanks to smartphones and wifi, that convenience is right there in your pocket at any time of day or night. Have you ever been to a store looking for a particular item only to find they don’t have it? Most physical stores have a limited stock, but online you’ll find a much wider variety of items that may have otherwise not been available to you. Another great advantage of online shopping, one that is likely to be most popular amongst consumers, is the potential to save money through effortless cost comparison. You no longer need to blindly trust the word of a retailer when they tell you that their products are cheaper than their competitors, now you can see it for yourself. Many clever cost comparison websites allow you to compare the prices of items from multiple retailers to ensure that you really are getting the best value for your money.

The Worst

Unfortunately though, it’s not all benefits and perks. With limited human involvement in the online shopping process, the risks of privacy and security issues are increased. By making an online payment through an insecure transaction you can risk opening yourself up to fraud or identity theft. As well as security issues, another disadvantage is not being able to physically see what you’re buying. Of course this purchasing behaviour has become the norm and we put a lot of trust in online retailers to provide us with what we expect, but occasionally we may fall pray to money scams if we aren’t vigilant. And of course there’s the lack of human customer service when things go wrong. All too often, a robot just cannot solve your problems but human help is unavailable or hard to get.

There’s no doubt that online shopping has revolutionised our experience as customers and will continue to do so as long as technological advances continue. But it is important to keep check of the risks we might overlook and new risks that may arise as online shopping becomes an increasingly normal part of our daily lives. So, shop with ease, convenience and variety but shop with vigilance to ensure you have the best online shopping experience possible.