If you asked me to define shopping five years ago I would have said, go to a store, browse and purchase the items you like, want or need. In this day and age, however the shopping game has completely changed. Department stores such as Macy's, JC Penny and Bloomingdale's reigned high for decades all too be outsmarted by the likes of T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and Ross which sell designer goods at very low prices. All of a sudden people had different options if they were seeking a certain brand. At times, I have seen the same Ralph Lauren purse at Macy's and Marshalls at the same time for a significantly different price.
And now, we now have a new player at the table, and that is the internet.
The wide use of the internet has made shopping so versatile that retailers are feeling the gloom of the black clouds overhead.
While shopping a few weeks ago with my husband, I fell in love with a Dooney & Bourke purse at Ross, the price tag was $89.99 and at the time I could not justify spending that much. So I went home searched for the purse online and saw it on D&B's own website for $135. Disappointed that I had missed a deal, I showed my husband and immediately he found the same purse, in brand new condition, with tags, on EBay for $55, he paid $10 shipping and tax and low and behold I had my purse for $65 and delivered right to do my door.
Online merchandisers are offering so many different incentives to shop via internet that is becoming more difficult to buy anything off the rack. They can offer cheaper prices because they do not have overhead costs such as rent and employee compensations. Stores have become a browsing ground, see what you like, then go home and buy it online for a lot cheaper. And frankly why should I not shop online? I can shop in the comfort of my own home, when my kids are asleep, without nagging store employees following me around and asking me if I need help, without spending the time on travel and money on gas. It gets delivered to my house in no time. Even if I can't get free shipping, with the increase in gas prices, sometimes it is still a better deal to shop at home.
Not only do you play less shopping online, sights such as Amazon, will almost become your personal shopper. You buy a few items, whether it is electronics, books, dance shoes or whatever and Amazon will automatically populate things you might like based on your previous purchases. And with Amazon, if you spend a certain amount in a month, you become a Prime member and get free shipping for a month for every $100 you spend. I have free shipping with Amazon until February 2012. Who could ask for anything more?
And of course, there are also stores such as Coldwater Creek who will let you return items to their own stores if you bought online.
With incentives such as these, is anyone really paying retail price anymore?
Louisalice (rep: 3) posted Sep 06, 2013
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