Shopping Online versus Traditional Shopping
Qn. 1. Shopping Online versus Traditional Shopping
Figure 1: Traditional Shopping for Clothes
The typical traditional shopping for clothes begins with problem recognition. The problem is often motivated by factors such as emergence of a new trend, anticipation of socialization (such as going for an event) enjoyment, the urge to have an immediate possession or risk reduction. Recognizing the problem prompts the information search, which can be achieved through window shopping, searching information online, or making inquiries in stores. Alternatively, a person can receive information through outdoor media or advertisements. The third step is evaluation of alternatives. When purchasing via traditional stores, the customer can visit physical stores such as H&M, Victoria Secret, American Eagle Outfitters, or Express and touch the fabrics, see the colors, wear the clothes and look at themselves in a mirror (Laney, 2015). This step ushers the fourth step of making the purchase decision. When purchasing clothes, the decisions are often influenced by the price, ambience of the stores, shop assistants and design of the stores and the clothes. For instance, a comparison of the prices for similar products across these selected stores showed that H&M was the cheapest and had fairly good customer service. In general, the actual shopping took 30 minutes. The last step is post-purchase evaluation where a customer reminisces over the service quality at the stores, and the type of
Figure 2: Online Shopping for Clothes
Just like traditional shopping, the buyer has to recognize a problem. The problem provides a motive or stimulus to purchase a new pair of clothing. The second step therefore is to search for information (Singh, 2019). Given that the customer is focused on making an online purchase, most of the information search is made online. The avenues for accessing information could be through social media sites, news and online advertisements. The third step is evaluating alternatives. This is after the customer has identified various clothing stores and cloth designs. The best online stores identified include; ASOS, Boohoo, Lululemon, PrettyLittleThing and Forever 21. The most preferable for affordable and high-quality clothing is BooHoo. The customer then decides on the store to purchase, price, and the type of clothing. The fourth step is making the actual purchase through an online store. In this case, the customer purchased BooHoo’s discounted hoody at $11.25 (BooHoo, 2020). The purchase time, from downloading the app, creating an account and selecting the product took less than 15 minutes. The delivery was done within 24 hours. The last step is post-purchase evaluation. During this stage, the customer went over the purchase experience.
Qn. 2. Comparison and Contrast of Experiences
Advantages and Disadvantages of Traditional Shopping
The main advantage realized from traditional shopping include the ability to test, feel and interact with the product before making a purchase. The experience ensures optimal enjoyment for the customer, while providing an opportunity to socialize with the staff in the stores (Rosenbaum, Otalora & Ramírez, 2017). The second advantage is that there are less risks of purchasing a product that the customer did not intend. Given that the customer can see the product and test prior to purchase, there is a higher chance of post purchase satisfaction. On the contrary, traditional shopping requires travelling to the stores. Since the onset of COVID-19, movements have been curtailed thus limiting the operations of physical clothing stores. Secondly, the stores are open for limited periods of time thus limiting the shopper to make purchases at certain times.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Online Shopping
The primary benefit of online shopping is convenience. The use of technology to ease the shopping process allows buyers to make purchase at their desired time and place. Furthermore, the internet eases the search stage as shoppers can easily collect information through online avenues such as electronic word of mouth and online advertisements. Second, online shopping allows for the customer to enjoy better prices compared to the stores (Sarkar & Das, 2017). Basically, online shops do not pay rent for the shops thus lowering their operation costs which are passed on to customers through discounted offers. On the contrary, online shopping exposes shoppers to security risks. This includes risks of cyber crimes such as identity theft. Secondly, online shopping lacks the shopping experience. Most people shop for the fun of it, however, online shopping fails to provide this experience.
BooHoo. (2020). Hoodies. Available at: https://www.boohoo.com/womens/tops/hoodies-sweats
Laney, B. (2015). America’s Top 10 Brick & Mortar Apparel Stores. Available at: http://alerttech.net/top-clothing-retailers-in-america/
Rosenbaum, M. S., Otalora, M. L., & Ramírez, G. C. (2017). How to create a realistic customer journey map. Business Horizons, 60(1), 143-150.
Sarkar, R., & Das, S. (2017). Online shopping vs Offline shopping: A comparative study. International Journal Scientific Research in Science and Technology IJSRST, 3 (1), 424-431.
Singh, V. (2019). Consumer Preference and Impact of Online Shopping on Traditional Retail Market: A Case Study. American Journal of Economics and Business Management, 2(1), 134-142.