Online shopping has been growing in popularity for the last few years. According to Statista, it’s expected that there will be 2.14 billion worldwide who have purchased goods and services online by 2021.
It’s no surprise why online shopping is popular: it’s convenient, available 24/7, and products can be priced lower due to the seller’s lower overhead costs. And because of the current situation driving people to stay at home and only go out when absolutely necessary, it’s expected that online shopping will grow even larger than expected in the next year.
That’s not to say that there are no difficulties when online shopping. So, if you’re thinking about buying online, beware of these four difficulties that could ruin your shopping experience.
The one advantage buying from a brick-and-mortar store that online shopping can never have is that, when you’re shopping via the former, you always know what you’re buying. You can personally check the product’s quality, see if it’s an original product, and for some products like clothes, you can even see if it fits you right before you make a purchase.
Through online shopping, however, you rely solely on pictures provided by the seller. It’s up to you to look at reviews from other customers and gauge how trustworthy the seller is, or you might end up like these women who regret buying their dresses online as the dress they received looked nothing like the one they were expecting. My advice: buyer beware, check the reviews, and if you’re buying a brand new dress that looks like it’s worth hundreds of dollars but priced at a fraction of the cost, lower your expectations and expect a lower quality product.
Fragile Product Shipping
Have you ever bought a fragile item that arrives damaged? The trip from the seller to your home may have been with many rough bumps, poor handling, and drops that could have led to the product’s damage. And unfortunately, as long as the seller can prove that the product was shipped in good condition, they aren’t responsible for the damage done during the delivery.
There are only a few sure remedies to avoid your fragile items from breaking. Aside from checking the reviews from other customers to see if the seller takes care to package fragile items properly, ask about which courier they’re using. If you really want to ensure your shipment’s safety, see if you can ask for a courier with a better track record.
Buying from International Brands
There are a lot of hurdles when it comes to buying from international stores. For example, have you ever tried shopping on international online stores like Sephora or Forever21 and found that there are some products you want from their store, but it’s only available for certain countries? Or, it can ship to your country, but the shipping fee is so high that it’s actually more expensive than the product you’re buying?
The cost of online shopping is still high for more international purchases. And unfortunately, there’s no legal way to circumvent these added costs because some of them are legally required. The only thing you can do is to find a courier that will provide the most affordable shipping from other countries to your doorstep.
Returns and Refunds
In case you didn’t get the product you want, trying to return a product or get a refund can be difficult. It can involve having to make the effort to ship the product back and then waiting up to a month for a refund. This is why many people who have problems with the item they received choose not to do anything about it.