Generally, Malaysians are skeptical or reluctant to shop online due to security concerns among many. We lack smart consumers, as suggested by Danny Foo.
Air Asia did a great job in our e-commerce education. Desperately in need of bargain air tickets? Learn how to shop online and brace yourself by entering the credit card numbers. We need more major players like them, to instill and encourage the online shopping habit into our populations.
Nevertheless, let's not limit ourselves to online ticketing or reservation (airline / hotel / movie). I am not saying that you gotta buy everything online but here are the reasons that you can look forward, especially for Malaysians who never experience buying physical goods online.
1. Promotions or bargains. Air Asia is a prime example of this - bargain tickets. Due to lower setup cost (compared to the brick & mortars), online retailers are most likely able to price their products lower or offer exciting promotions. If you are keen on bargains, eBay or Lelong could well be a start of your bargain-hunting exploration.
2. Gems or rare stuffs. Talking about marketplaces like eBay or Lelong, those are the places where you can hunt for stuffs like art, antiques, collectibles, memorabilia etc. Internet does facilitate a whole lot of long tail products to be sold. Looking for militaria or an Elmo bento set? The easiest way is to search, shop and buy online.
3. Save time and convenience. Okay not everyone enjoy shopping at our congested shopping malls. This is especially true for people that are having busy lifestyle, or to a certain extent working parents. I am not suggesting skipping mall visits altogether but shopping online occasionally would be just as enjoyable.
4. More options, wider selection. Online stores are not limited by shelf space constraints, in most cases they are able to display every SKUs they have. For instance if you are looking for fashion or accessories, there are already so many online stores to shop. Plenty of options you have, all you need to do is click or type rather than walk or drive!
5. Help buying decision. Online stores are not only giving you the options but more importantly, help your buying decision. Obviously, you can compare products or prices among shops by just a few clicks. You can also check out feedback from their existing customers. Of course, we don't have something as huge as Amazon's yet but you can start your findings via their Facebook pages.
6. Gift purchase. Buying online is a great way to surprise your loved ones. Having it delivered to his or her address could well be a pleasant surprise. This is especially true for guys who typically don't enjoy outdoor shopping, or to avoid embarrassment of making discreet purchase like a piece of sexy lingerie or some adult
7. Surprise and excitement. Some online retailers might be able to please you by shipping a surprise gift together with your purchase. I personally enjoy the excitement of anticipating the arrival of my purchase, it feels like buying a gift for myself!
Last but not least, you will have more reasons to shop online if you are not residing in major cities. Online stores or shopping destinations are just within touching distance of mouse clicks. This is especially true for those in East Malaysia, in which (offline) prices are generally more expensive. By shopping online, prices are not logistically marked up and all you gotta do is to take advantage of the free shipping promotions. Shop in the spirit of 1Malaysia, 1 price for all!
Do you have anything to add, or disagree? Do share your thoughts by commenting below and stand a chance to win a mini shopping cart (as photo above) - delivered to your address anywhere in Malaysia, courtesy of webShaper.