Most people think that shopping online is more expensive than actually visiting a retail outlet, what with shipping and handling costs and other charges that show up on your credit card bill. But looking at the numbers on the screen is not the only way to determine just how much you're actually paying when you shop online. In today's fast-paced world, you also have to think about the time spent shopping, the convenience and the resources invested into actually being able to buy a product.
Shopping, let's break it down
When you shop, it's not just about the point of sale. You also have to think about what enables you to go to the store and buy anything. This means that the cost of an item or your trip should be factored into the amount you pay. If you take the bus, the fare you pay is part of the cost. The gas you consume is also part of the cost.
Another thing you should take into consideration is the time you spent shopping. In today's fast-paced world, every minute counts, and the effort and time you spend at the mall could be seen as money lost or time not used to earn. If you go shopping on your break, that's time you could have used to rest or eaten lunch. So you see, the item's price tag isn't the total cost.
Internet shopping also has aggregate costs that you should take into consideration. The electricity you consume as you browse the website and the internet service are parts of the total cost. Another thing you have to take into consideration is the shipping cost, but keep in mind that this could be waived for large orders. Aside from these fees, keep in mind that your credit card company or bank may charge you small costs for currency conversions and online fees.
You might think that you have to pay for customer service when you shop online but you coulnd't be more mistaken. A good shopping site always has a good phone service, especially since VoIP is much cheaper nowadays.
But here's how online shopping gets it back
Ultimately, what online shopping holds over actual store experiences is aggregate cost reduction. You have to factor in the time you save when you buy things online and the effort put into purchasing.
Think of it this way, you can hardly work or read while you're out shopping in the mall. But when you shop on your computer, you can actually do so leisurely wihtout losing precious time walking around and searching for a good bargain.
The cost of electricity and internet service could be considered zero as long as you're using your computer and internet at the same time you're browsing online stores. What's more, you don't have to waste time in transit as you can easily go to the store within a few clicks.
And then there's sale season
A sale at an actual store could be very stressful. You're fighting for low-priced items alongside other people with limited customer assistance. When online stores go on sale, it's just you and how fast you can decide if the item is worth the price. You're still fighting, but without the elbowing and stress. This means that you're just in a race to reserve the item and pay for it.
Michelle Simpson is a professional editor that focuses in the field of technology like IP PBX, business and current trends in the industry.