By the end of 2015, online shopping in the UK was worth £115bn, a figure that’s expected to increase through Christmas 2016. It’s estimated that 27pc of all retail sales in the UK now take place online. So, what’s stopping you? Here are our favourite reasons why you should shop online:
1 Carrying things is a thing of the past
Staggering home with 10 supermarket shopping bags is a pain – especially when they cost 5p each. Shop online, get them delivered and have a bag-free shop.
2 You can do it after a few drinks
Nobody ever walked into a store and walked out with a gazebo and a tiger onesie. But thanks to sites such as Amazon, and other eclectic marketplaces, it’s perfectly acceptable to sit down after a glass or two of vino and ponder what your living room would look like with a zebra print wall rug. Even better, nobody need ever witness you making these embarrassing purchases.
3 It’s easy to return things
Refunds are your friend. Why not buy four dresses, try them on in the comfort of your own home and send back the ones that don’t fit? Yes, you can try on several dresses in-store, too, but no one will rush you at home and there will be no more split-second changing room decisions or a trip to town to take back the rejects.
4 It keeps on evolving
Online marketplaces are pushing boundaries all the time. They know people are becoming used to the convenience of the internet, so they are looking for ways to keep people amused. Amazon Dash is a button you can attach around the house – above the toilet or by the washing machine – that lets you demand a delivery of toilet roll or washing powder if you run out. Useful, and fun!
5 Sending gifts to relatives is easy
Forgot a nephew’s birthday? No worries. Simply have a quick look online, make your purchase and get your gift delivered next day. Include a little notecard and you’ll look like the most organised relative on the planet.
6 Buy things with no one knowing
Afraid all your neighbours will laugh at your Hello Kitty carrier bag? Well then, just book online. Most likely, your goods will be delivered in a secretive brown box, and curtain-twitchers will be sorely disappointed with your activities.
7 Use your coupons
There’s always a coupon voucher to be found and applied. Buying white goods or electrics? Chances are big appliance stores are in direct competition with online marketplaces, so they might offer discount vouchers with 10 per cent off to entice you. Check sites such as VoucherCodes.co.uk for good deals.
8 Check the reviews
You head to the store, see a toaster you’ve been dying to buy, but suddenly realise there aren’t pages and pages of reviews stuck onto the shelf. How will you know if the toast toasts on both sides? What if the spring thing jams? Buying online means you can read millions of reviews, ensuring the toaster of your dreams wings its way to you speedily.
Sacked out: online shopping means no more lugging bags around town CREDIT: GETTY
9 It can be cheaper than the high street
Rather than traipse from one end of the high street to the other, shopping online means you can hunt for the cheapest deals without leaving the comfort of home. It might take a little longer online, but you’ll be able to purchase your item happy in the knowledge you paid the best price.
10 No crowds!
The best reason to shop online by far – who wants to scrum their way through a crowded store playing covers of terrible 1980s music? Set up your laptop and sit with a shortbread biscuit and mug of tea. Bliss.
11 It’s much more convenient
If it’s Wednesday evening and you suddenly realise there’s just enough in the cupboard for some beans on toast, don’t panic. Eat the beans, and then order a next-morning online delivery. By 8am the next day, your shelves will be full and beans will be off the menu. Get a shop delivered weekly and you’ll never run out of food again.
12 It’s easier to avoid distraction
How many times have you got to the checkout with a dozen things you have zero memory of putting in the basket? Shopping online means you know you need to buy carrots, so you go online and add carrots to the basket. It’s also harder to succumb to a supermarket’s subliminal advertising when you are online, saving you cash.
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