Posted by: Spacehamster74 | 01/07/2011

About the Online Shopping debate

There’s been quite a bit of press lately about the Big Retailers campaign against Online shopping. I’ve been shopping online for a few years now. In almost all cases, I’ve found that the prices of online retailers are much cheaper than their bricks-and-mortar counterparts.

For example: I went to Dick Smith and Optus when I was shopping for my Samsung Galaxy smartphone. In both cases the customer service was apathetic (to say the least), and neither retailer had the Galaxy in stock. So I bought the phone at Mobicity instead. Their customer service was fast and friendly. And every purchase comes with a 12-month guarantee. I received the phone within a week, whereas I would’ve had to wait for a month if I’d bought it from Dick Smith or Optus.

Better customer service and lower prices are the reason I prefer to shop online. And it’s only now that Big Retailers like Harvey Norman are starting to recognise just how big a threat online retailers are to their businesses. So they respond to this threat, not by being providing better service or being innovative. Instead, they use tactics that I believe amount to intimidation: “If you don’t shop with us, we’ll slug you with a new tax.”. A large proportion of the online retailers I shop with are based in Australia. Even though Harvey and his partners say they are campaigning against foreign companies like, I think the real target of their anger and vitriol are sites like Mobicity and PC CaseGear. It’s about protecting their bottom-line, not serving their customers – and it always has been.

And they wonder why I won’t shop with them again if I can help it.


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