Online shopping is going to explode. Today, retailers are adding in-store pickup, offering free shipping and experimenting with social media. It is becoming more and more difficult to tell who is a pure Internet retailer and who is a physical store with online portals. All of them are reshaping how we will shop online in the future: through a mobile device, a tablet, an in-store kiosk, etc.
New legislation may be required to protect customers, but this will also negatively affect online shopping. Internet retailers would have to collect sales tax. We will talk about this latest legislation in this article.
However, more and more traditional retailers are turning to online sales. LL Bean launched free shipping on all items, Macy’s is offering free shipping on purchases of $99 or more, Walmart bought the social media platform Kosmix to build its online business, and Toys R Us bought a new distribution center to support retail sales. Internet.
More and more retailers will implement in-store pickup. Walmart has already started offering in-store pickup for orders placed online. Sears and Kmart are testing home delivery. Farm Stores in Florida offer their shoppers to order groceries online and pick them up in a drive-thru. Some smaller stores may even open designated pickup locations for products ordered online (eg Chronodrive).
Today, smartphone owners can use apps that allow them to do price comparisons or use coupons to shop online. But we are just getting started with this type of technology.
The new apps allow customers to upload video clips modeling new clothes or wearing a new purchase. This is a new feature, but it will definitely improve quickly.
What about the power of social networks like Facebook and Twitter? As a consumer, you can “Like” or follow a favorite retailer and get discounted deals. For example, 12 million consumers “liked” Victoria’s Secret on Facebook in March 2011.
Jim Okamura (Managing Partner of Okamura Consulting) says that social shopping is just getting started. He mentions that Facebook offers a good return on investment. However, there are still many retailers that have not yet taken advantage of this advantage.
Online shopping will also help many small niche online retailers. Through international or cross-border e-commerce, they now make 10-20% of their sales outside their own country (eg SousVideSupreme, Zara, Top Shop and StyleTrek).
Today there are more and more sites breaking through so many sites and giving consumers only the information they care about: Dealnews, ConsumerSearch, Brad’s Deals and My Shopping Genie. There are sites you can use to find coupon codes and possibly earn money while shopping online. There are also a variety of websites that you can use to earn “points” or “dollars”. You can accumulate these points and dollars and “cash them in” for gifts such as gift cards, real money, accessories, electronics, etc. (SwagBucks).
A big plus for online shopping consumers is that as it becomes easier to compare prices (through My Shopping Genie, for example), stores will be forced to create better experiences with better sales staff and difficult items. to find elsewhere.
In an April 2011 article, it was revealed that China shut down 410 websites involved in copyright violations and counterfeiting in the first 3 months of 2010. This is a sign that governments are now trying to interfere in the legitimization of online sales and make them safe for the Internet. shoppers China’s online shopping has been booming (iResearch analysis). China has more than 450 million Internet users, making it the largest in the world. China’s online shopping transaction volume increased 89.4% year on year. About 148 million customers bought goods or services online in 2010. China’s online economy grew rapidly in the first quarter of 2011, mainly driven by the development of e-commerce and the mobile Internet. Due to this increase in online shopping, local Chinese authorities are placing more emphasis on monitoring online stores.
Another example is Malaysia. Malaysians spent $739 million on online purchases last year, according to a survey published by PayPal. PayPal’s growth in Malaysia last year was the strongest in the Asia-India region at 70%. The largest percentage of online retail purchases is made on local websites. However, the US is the most popular country for Malaysians to shop.
As we mentioned earlier, governments are now trying to make online shopping safer for customers.
In an ABC News article from April of this year, it is stated that the White House has developed a plan called the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) to combat online identity theft. The idea of this plan is to consolidate Internet logins, a kind of “Connect” for online purchases with the government’s mark of approval. In addition, increased security will encourage consumers and financial services companies to adopt smartphone payments. Supporters of this system pointed out that the program would be voluntary. However, there are pros and cons regarding this topic. Clients can benefit from this type of legislation, but it also has its disadvantages.