Commercial trade has been part of our lives, right from the beginning of time. The modes of transactions and sales have been evolving from barter system to moneyed trade. The need to reach out to different markets placed far apart. It was this motive that fuelled the likes of the East India Trading Company of the British Empire to sail the high seas and sell their goods to people of new lands across the globe. At every stage the advent of science and technology spurred trade to new heights and many more innovations. The biggest innovation in trade today is E-Commerce. It is basically explained as the trade done using the worldwide web, i.e., buying and selling over the internet.
The sales due to this progress have reached unimaginable heights and traders have achieved unprecedented sales and profits. But the question remains – is online trade or shopping better than the high street or malls? A brief description of the benefits of E Commerce will help to clarify this dilemma once and for all.
From a consumer point of view:
The world of online shopping opens avenues to a consumer that in the previous days was almost unheard of. Consumers now can buy items that cannot be easily found in their local markets online. No matter what the item, some trader somewhere will always be able to provide you with it. But what is the use if that trader and this consumer cannot build a communication base. The websites of various products offered by traders the world over can be accessed by a consumer anywhere on the planet. Once the order is sent in the consumer can have the product shipped over easily and the trader can be paid via credit cards. This way the trade is completed quickly and efficiently and the consumer can thus purchase any product manufactured and sold anywhere in the world. The consumer can also compare prices of the same products and buy the one most suited to his budget. Also wholesale and clearance sale deals have broadened the consumer’s horizons to a large extent making him able to stretch his money a long way.
From the retailer’s point of view:
As a retailer, e commerce is definitely a boon. It has tremendously improved his customer base and thereby his sales and subsequent profits have soared. Some retailers have noticed that the sales of their products in the physical stores is not meeting the targets set out for breaking even or making profits. This occurs when the customers visiting the store are not really the target customers and therefore they have no interests in his items. Thus sales fall increasingly and if there were no other avenues from which he could make his scale he would have to close down his shop. Online shopping allows him to make up for the store deficit while still remaining afloat enough to service the local demand (however small it may be). Also every trader knows that the increase in footfalls will eventually increase sales. Online shopping increases the footfalls to such impressive numbers that failing at an enterprise online is quite improbable.
Thus we can see that online shopping is increasingly more beneficial as compared to the high street malls.