WHY SHOP ONLINE
One of the main questions people ask us is "Why should I?".
My first answer, of course, is "Why shouldn't you?".
Here are a few major questions to ask yourself -
Do your community merchants provide all the various types of shopping you would want - such as ethnic foods, seafood, gourmet foods, designer name fashions, and so on?
You have to have a credit card (or a bank debit card which works the same way) to shop on line. You can find whatever it is you are looking for, and normally have it shipped within 24 hours.
If one of your local merchants can order in your special request, how long does it take to get it?
What started us out on this project was the fact that we needed a specific woodworking tool. The local lumber and hardware stores did not carry it, but could order it - it would take about three weeks. We found it on line that night (the exact make and model we wanted) and ordered it. We received an e-mail confirmation that next morning with shipping confirmation. And we got it the next day. Also saved close to $100.00. You very rarely run into a delayed shipping when ordered on line.
What are the prices in your local stores as compared to on line stores (don't forget to add in shipping if necessary)?
Don't try to compare everyday items you might buy at your local WalMart. They are a bulk buyer and provide all of us a service in everyday items. Try to do your comparing on clothing, shoes, food etc.
Are your local stores open when you are ready to shop? If you get off work at 5:00, then pick up your children, hurry home to fix dinner for the family, and clean up after dinner, are you ready then to go shopping? Do your little ones want to stay home after a long day at the sitter or day care? So you opt in for Saturday or Sunday shopping - you and everyone else. The lines are long - if the stores are open.
You can shop 24 hours, seven days a week on line. All provide a way to use your credit card in a safe, secure mode. NEVER e-mail your credit card information to ANYONE.
Will internet shopping be a passing fancy? Mainstreet merchants would like you to think so. Look at these facts:
In December 1899, an editor of an Ohio newspaper wrote an editorial about the evils of the new Sears Home Catalog. It was ruining the stores on main street of his town. He predicted Sears to die out, and that life would return to normal in a couple years. Look where home shopping is now!
You can in some communities even order your groceries on line and have them delivered to your home. Take a look at http://www.safeway.com - this is a reality now, not in the future.
As we get older, it is harder and harder to get around. I am disabled, and recently I spent one hour at our local Wal Mart Super Store. The store is huge, and my legs were killing me by the time we left. Granted, the internet so far cannot beat Wal Mart's prices on things like Kleenex, soap, paper towels. I would love to have it delivered to my door. Update: WalMart now has home delivery with free shipping over $45. Can't beat that!
Who is to blame if home catalogs and the internet are hurting mainstreet merchants? As former retail merchants, we put the blame squarely where it needs to be - on the merchants. Talk to some older merchants. If you can get them talking, they will tell you about "keystone" pricing - doubling what you pay for an item. They will tell you about "double keystone" or even "triple keystone". I know of one lady who owned a store here. Right before she ran a clearance sale, she went through and marked UP the items, then marked them down. Small town merchants thought for years they had captive buyers. They don't have that captive buyer any longer. The consumer is now FREE from the bonds of locality, limited or no competition, and many other factors.
Browse our various shopping links. Be an educated consumer. You will finally feel the freedom you deserve.
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