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Online vs Offline Shopping

  • Vrinda Mathur
  • Mar 08, 2022
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As soon as we hear the word shopping our minds are thrilled with excitement and joy. With the pandemic in which we are living today, online shopping has been no less than an essential organ to us. 


Be it daily household essentials or any sort of luxury, online shopping has been our best friend in these difficult times. Let us now understand the key distinguishing features of online shopping vs offline shopping. Primarily let us understand what we really understand by Online Shopping.


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Introduction to Online Shopping


Everyday shopping is a part of life. Some people receive what they need from shopping, while others get something more. It is considered as a technique to relieve tension, to fulfill a mental goal, or to give some flavor to the mechanical way of life. 


Shopping is arguably one of the oldest expressions for discussing what we have all been doing for several years. Online shopping, sometimes known as e-shopping, is a type of ecommerce in which customers use a web browser to buy products or services directly from a vendor via the internet. 


Other names for an e-web-store include e-shop, estore, internet shop, web-shop, web-store, online sort, virtual store, and so on. Simply simply, it is any type of sale conducted through the internet. 


Since the advent of the internet, shopping has taken on a whole new meaning because of what the internet has to offer, that is, any individual or organization from any area of the world who is able to publish and sell items on the internet using a website.


Furthermore, the customer does not have to worry about having to discover a way to trade monetary paper since not only is online banking made available; the client is given the choice to pay using various payment methods. 


It is now even easier to locate the most difficult product, by just entering in the product or item that a buyer is looking for. Don't be concerned. Concerning the site, since logistic businesses are also jumping on board, so to say, and assisting in making. They were certain that their items would be available to any and all places throughout the world.


Also Read | Customer Retention Marketing


How does Online Shopping work?


Most importantly, you will require an Internet connection, a debit or credit card, and a strong password. You may also need an email address or a phone number. 


Most retailers will let you create your own password. Make it a password that no one can guess. Avoid your and your family's birthdays. Ideally, you should use a mix of letters, numerals, and upper and lower case.


You then browse the things that the merchant has to offer. They may have a category list, such as furniture, sports equipment, gardening, and so on. Most stores additionally include a search function. This means you may jot down the name of the thing you're looking for to check if they have it.


Online Payments


When it comes time to pay, the shop will request your credit card information. They'll need the card's name, the lengthy 16-digit number, the expiration date, and a 3-digit number on the reverse. You may also be required to submit information about the card's billing address.


When providing your credit card information, ensure that their website begins with 'HTTPS' rather than 'HTTP.' A web address that begins with HTTPS' denotes a secure page that may accept payments.



Factors affecting Online Shopping


In the recent decade, online shopping has grown in popularity. The type of business that internet retailers do demonstrates that they provide some benefits to customers that physical purchasing does not. These are the factors that influence internet shopping:


  1. Risk


When customers acquire things through internet shopping, they do not physically touch or feel the product. As a result, we recognise that there is a lot of risk involved when purchasing an online goods. 


Whether it will arrive on time or not is also a worry, and as a result, there may be a danger of product size and color as they may differ in actual view or sense. Occasionally, the ordered goods get damaged.


  1. Convenience


Online purchasing is far more convenient than traditional shopping. Instead of driving around from store to store, you may conduct your shopping from the comfort of your own home. 


It is handy to sit in one area and shop for the goods of our choosing without having to move from one location to another. Once you've determined what you want to buy, the payment process is simple, and the product is delivered to your home or office.


  1. Quality


The quality of products at online and offline businesses varies greatly, which influences the frequency with which people purchase online. Quality also has a positive impact on the environment when it comes to any type of buying. As a customer or buyer, you desire high-quality goods since you spent a lot of money on it.


  1. Delivery Time


The goods bought by the consumer in online shopping takes at least six to seven days to be delivered to the customer. However, in the case of offline shopping, ownership of the products is instantly transferred to the customer. As a result, this is a significant element influencing internet buying.


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Introduction to Offline Shopping


Offline shopping advantages from the opportunity to physically choose and inspect what an item or thing is like, would look like, and its attributes. This is why some people still prefer conventional buying over internet purchasing since, for one thing, it allows them to thoroughly inspect an item. 


E-commerce platform is a popular location where buyers and sellers do not interact, resulting in a lack of product awareness. Despite the fact that the consumer visits the online buying site, he or she does not exhibit any interest in acquiring the product.


Among the causes include a lack of trust, a loss of tactile touch and feel, security concerns, and so on. One of the major advantages of offline shopping is  that you do not have to wait for the services or items that you purchase. 


Because you purchase it straight from the seller, your services or items are immediately available to you. There is no need to wait for the delivery of your purchased services and items. Because you can hold the things in your hands immediately while buying offline, you can inspect the quality immediately and provide feedback at the time of purchase


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Factors Affecting Offline Shopping


Offline shopping is impacted by multiple factors. We’ve discussed some of them below : 


  1. Taste and Preference


The tastes and preferences of customers change all the time. When a buyer buys a thing in person, he or she has the option to try it on, but this is not feasible when ordering online.


  1. Time Consuming


Buying items from offline stores takes a long time because the distance from home to the market place is long. When you buy goods and services offline, you have to pay extra money on transportation, which you may save by buying products and services online.


  1. Bargaining


In offline buying, a client may physically haggle on pricing, discount offers, and so on, which is not feasible in online shopping because the prices of goods and services are fixed in online shopping. Some clients assume that internet shopping items are more expensive than offline shopping merchandise.


  1. Feel and Touch


When purchasing things offline, a buyer may see, feel, and touch the product, which is not feasible when shopping online. Some individuals will not buy anything until they can touch and feel it.


(Also Read - What is Ecommerce and M-commerce)


Distinguishing Factors between Online and Offline Shopping


Online and offline shopping can be distinguished on the basis of :-

Difference between online and offline shopping on the basis of:- 1. Availability 2. Payment methods 3.Physical Interaction 4. Shipping Charges5. Transport Cost 6. Knowledge

Difference between online and offline shopping






Available around the clock. There is no time limit while buying online. You have the option of ordering your item or goods whenever you wish.

Not accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In the case of offline purchasing, the store may not be open at all times. You have to wait for the timing.

Payment Method

You may pay using any payment method, such as net banking, credit or debit card, Google Pay, and so on.

With the advancement in technology and during these pandemic times, now there are similar payment methods available for offline shopping as well. 

Physical Interaction 

In the case of internet buying, there is no physical interaction. The things are just visible virtually 

In offline buying, there is complete physical engagement. You have the ability to interact with your stuff. And Judge the quality of your item.

Shipping charges 

When you shop online, you may be charged a delivery fee.

There is no need to pay for shipping.

Transport cost 

Online shopping eliminates the need for transportation.

The consumer may be charged for transportation.


You have some understanding of electronics and the internet if you purchase online. If you are a new visitor, you must also use it for the same purchasing sites.

There is no need for prior understanding of electronics or the internet. You may just go to a store and purchase your preferred item.


(Also Read - IoT in Ecommerce)


In the end, it’s up to you whether you prefer online shopping or offline shopping. Both have their pros and cons respectively. Later it depends on the preference and comfort of the customer what they prefer.

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