Online vs In-Store: Which Is Better?

Online vs In-Store: Which Is Better?

Online vs In-Store: Which Is Better?

The internet is an amazing thing. You can do all your shopping without leaving the comfort of your home. With more people choosing online over traditional retail outlets, we thought we would share some tips on how to get the most out of each purchase decision.

1.      The ability to try before you buy

Clearly, in store shopping is the winner here. It allows you to try before you buy, without having to take the item home to realise it isn’t suitable. Although online shopping is beginning to offer free returns, you often have to return the item at your own cost.

2.      The ability to compare products and services at your own pace

Being able to compare products and services at your own pace is easy on the internet. Most websites have the ability to compare more than one option and you can also use Google to search for reviews about that particular product or service.

Evaluation of products and services can also be done in store but can be influenced by other factors including short-staffed stores, a noisy purchase environment or the personal opinions of sales people. If you want to be able to take your time comparing items, online shopping has clear advantages.

3.      The ability to get cheaper pricing

Consumers sometimes make the mistake of thinking online is cheaper. Although this can sometimes be true, you have to remember that items purchased online require postage, shipping and some may also require postal insurance. When it all adds up, the online price may not be that cheap after all.

Did you know that most in store retailers will price match if the item is sold by a legitimate competitor (both online and in store)? Try this out and you will be surprised at how much money you can save using this method. If they aren’t willing to price match, their business probably isn’t worth pursuing.

4.      The ability to ask questions

Asking questions in store is advantageous, as you can ask various different types of questions and get an answer instantly. Asking questions online is a little more difficult, as you have to wait for the seller to respond.

5.      The ability to purchase unique items

There is a greater variety of items online. If you are looking for items that are unique or vintage, the online shopping experience is definitely better.

Overall recommendations

Although receiving your items in the mail is exciting, remember the number of times you have been disappointed when an item did not quite fit, or wasn’t as described. If this has happened to you on numerous occasions, then maybe in store shopping is better suited to you.

Remember also that the retail industry is one of Australia’s largest industries so if consumers don’t shop in store, retail stores will be forced to close down. Although we don’t want consumers paying more for items than they have to, supporting the retail industry is important to the future of Australia.

Julia Makin

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