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  • Writer's pictureLuana

Online shopping is the new trend

We live in an age in which the online world is fighting for its place in our lives. And most of us have generally turned to the virtual side of life for a variety of reasons, whether it is lack of time, the multitude of options, or the novelty of it, but there are still some who are reluctant to venture into the commercial side of the online universe and prefer to keep their traditional methods.

However, online or virtual shopping is perhaps the best invention of mankind. Having endless

options at our fingertips eliminates the hassle of going out and trying to find the item we need.

Shopping cart abandonment or the new therapy of our era

For some people, shopping online is a form of therapy. No, I'm not talking about the kind of online shopping sprees you see advertised everywhere and portrayed in movies. I am referring to 'shopping cart abandonment' which refers to that moment when an online customer starts a check-out process, but leaves before completing the purchase (according to Optimizely).

There is, however, more to e-commerce, as the figures demonstrate. According to Statista, worldwide retail e-commerce sales reached 4.9 trillion USD in 2022, corresponding to a global e-commerce penetration rate of 24.5% by 2025, with Brazil leading the way.

How do people feel about e-commerce?

Yet the question remains: “How do people feel about e-commerce?”. Beyond the data, it's important to see how people feel about this type of commerce and if they prefer to continue this kind of activity in the future. According to CloudWards, ‘over half of consumers prefer shopping in a physical store’. This example, while

neither good or bad, perfectly illustrates my argument in the introduction. It is not yet known whether people want to shop online forever, or if they want to use it only when necessary.

Additionally, it's true that people have become more open to this kind of commerce over the years, and the recent pandemic has more than contributed to this. Statista shows that over 2 billion unique people have made at least one online purchase in 2020, but it saw a growth of 31% from 2019 to 2020, a trend that cannot be ignored.

In 2021, e-commerce levels have returned to normal, with only a 14% increase (which shows that people are not losing interest on it yet), as the pandemic has slowly left our lives, as eMarketer shows.

Let's head back a bit to the part where we consider the feelings of people when shopping online. According to a study from 2018, published by Martech Series, 'every fifth shopper finds online shopping stressful'. Study data takes into account US consumers, so in statistics that would be 21%. Obviously, there are a lot of things to measure here, including how comfortable they are with online shopping and how they feel about the online world in general.

Further digging into the topic, we found that 59% of consumers surveyed say they prefer to shop online over the holiday season, according to Forbes. So e-commerce isn't for everyone, not even during the holiday season.

What marketplace rules the e-commerce industry?

There is no doubt about which marketplaces people prefer to shop on. If we take reach and traffic into consideration, Statista displays on the first place, with a share of 13.21%, is on the second place, with a share of 3.18%. Interestingly, Amazon is not just a global leader, but also has its own version in Germany and Japan.

However, it is surprising that ranked last, even though many people buy cheap items from it and wait a month or two for them to arrive.

Disadvantages and advantages of e-commerce?

Virtual or online shopping has its ups and downs, like any other thing in the world.

The main advantages would be:
  • The variety of products. As opposed to the real world, where you have to visit several stores to find everything that you need, when it comes to this type of virtual shopping, you just need to type in the search bar the keywords for the items that you want to buy, and it's done.

According to Statista, about 68% of consumers (from USA) use Google as a search tool while they’re shopping for a specific product. So it’s clear that people love the flexibility and variety of the internet.

  • How convenient the process is. There is no doubt that we all live busy lives and don't have the time that maybe our parents or grandparents used to have, therefore we need to be able to buy the products we need by simply pressing a button. In addition, we all have different schedules, so some people may shop late at night, while others may do so early in the morning.

The main disadvantages would be:
  • The hidden costs. It has happened to all of us, just when we were about to complete an online purchase, a hidden cost appeared, such as a delivery fee. And it’s a pretty common practice if you think about the fact that 49% of customers (US adults) abandon their cart because of this exact reason, according to Baymard Institute.

  • The possibility of the product not matching up with the picture. It's pretty obvious why this happens. Prettying up your online shop means you try to make the best pictures, but sometimes... they are not accurate.

The verdict? Online shopping is here to stay.

Now, we shouldn’t avoid the truth: People still have mixed feelings about the situation, and that's also normal.

Do you remember when social media was just starting out? In the past, we all had second thoughts, but now even our parents have social media accounts. This is likely to happen with e-commerce too, and we are here to witness it.



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