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Online Retailing; A Marvellous Evolution


Posted At: 02 October 2008 13:36 PM
Related Categories: E-tailing, Future of Retailing


I am a great fan of shopping online. As you may expect, I’ve been a dedicated surfer for a while now - a good decade or so, really (not long to some, but I’m only 23!) - so the fears and reservations harboured by many have been quelled within me by a long and successful relationship with the e-street, during which I’ve never experienced so much as a denied refund let alone identity fraud.

Yes, ‘plastic card’ fraud is up 14% since last year, but to put this into context, fraud sourced from the Internet went up 204% between 2001 and 2007, while transactions increased by 415%! 


Take a look at that figure. 415%. Staggering, isn’t it. In 2001, the internet was…well, not much more than a massive pornography library, and the hangout of some uber geeks, if we’re honest about it. The word ‘iPod’ returned an “Image Proof of Deposit Document Processing System” website top of the list, and shopping options included Amazon (launched in 1995) and a supremely ugly CDNow website*. Now…well, now you can book a holiday to Australia, get a taxi to the airport and back, and arrange for your food shopping to be dropped at your door just hours after your return, without even leaving the house.


I’m gad that things have moved on and I’m clearly not the only one.

While high street sales figures are falling, online figures continue to rise; just today, Marks and Spencer posted an overall 1.6 per cent fall in UK sales for the second quarter of 2008, with online sales 34% up! And do I need to mention the word ‘ASOS’…? The golden child of cyber space, ASOS recently announced a 104% year on year increase in sales for the 6 months to the end of September 2008!

So, we’re all in love. Even men love Internet shopping (42% of men shop online every week compared to 35% of women) so while I’m not going to say the future looks bright, I will say that I expect to see online spending increase more and more as shoppers hunt for both a bargain and a way of saving more of their ever-dwindling time. Lets hope retailers are ready, eh…



*To see for yourself, visit Google as it was in 2001 here

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The opinions expressed herein are the personal opinion of the author and are not intended as statements of fact and do not represent the view of SnapShop or Pragma in any way.


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