Do You Prefer Shopping Online, or Offline and Why?

United States
August 26, 2011 11:40am CST
Personally, I don't have a preference. I like to shop both online, and offline in stores in my area. I think shopping online and offline both have their pro's and con's. For example, shopping in local stores may be safer than shopping online in terms of actually getting what you pay for and not paying without receiving an item. Which do you prefer and why? What are the pro's and con's that make you prefer one over the other? Let's discuss!
14 people like this
24 responses
@petersum (4526)
• United States
26 Aug 11
Yeah sure! Like people are going to ship to Greece? Just add $400 for shipping? It isn't a choice! Want my credit card number? Ha!
1 person likes this
• United States
26 Aug 11
Haha! There are no online companies in Greece you can shop at?
5 people like this
• United States
26 Aug 11
Ugh, Peter, you are making Greece sound more and more depressing...
• United States
26 Aug 11
LOL Poor Greece!
5 people like this
@bagarad (12327)
• Paso Robles, California
26 Aug 11
My preference is to shop locally, since I can see before I buy, read the package, etc. Also, I don't have to wait for something to come in the mail, since I can take it home with me immediately and there is no added shipping charge. Besides that, the taxes I pay will help me local community. I shop on line when I can't find the items I'm looking for locally. I remember 20 years ago, if I wanted a used book, I'd have to check several bookstores and maybe initiate a search. Now when I need a used book, I go right to www.tomfolio.com and if they don't have it I go to www.bookfinder.com and I can usually find several copies to choose from. Unfortunately, I'm unable to browse the shelves in search of books I didn't know about and just happen to see. Tomfolio's category system makes these kind of discoveries easy, since one can browse by very specific interests, such as books about roses or cat mysteries and find books you didn't know existed. The downside of this is that the more we buy on line, the more likely local sources will disappear because their sales go down drastically. How many small towns still have used bookstores, or even regular bookstores? Even Borders just went out of business. That is a disadvantage because it forces us to go on line to buy things we used to be able to get immediately locally and takes away our option to see before we buy.
• United States
26 Aug 11
Great response bagarad! I love your response because it is so detailed, and true! I never thought about how online shopping could eventually result in more local stores going out of business. That is a horrible idea to think about!
4 people like this
@bagarad (12327)
• Paso Robles, California
26 Aug 11
Many people don't think about that. They think only about where they can get a price that's just a bit lower. Since I see I'm about to write in a different direction, I think I will start another discussion to expand on this.
• United States
26 Aug 11
bagarad, feel free to expand on this right here in this discussion! That is what makes it a discussion! Don't worry if you get a bit off topic, it's okay!
4 people like this
• United States
26 Aug 11
Hi Angelee! I do like both offline and online but I definitely prefer offline. When it comes to clothing I like to try it on and not have to guess and hope it will fit just right. I am one of those that does enjoy browsing and feeling the items before I decide what I like. I don't like to receive an item to later be disappointed. When I am offline shopping I get exactly what I am holding. lol
• United States
26 Aug 11
Good point, I don't think I would risk buying clothing online because I too like to try clothes on to make sure they fir how I want them too, and also to see how they look on my body. Some clothes look great in the photos, or even on the hanger at the store... but when you put them on, they can look completely different.
4 people like this
• United States
26 Aug 11
What I have learned throughout the years is that anything on a hanger I dislike, it is not until I try it on that I come to realize, wow this looks good. lol
• United States
26 Aug 11
I know right! Sometimes someone will suggest I try something on, and I am like "Eww! I would never wear that!"... but I try it on anyways and I realize it looks really good, and makes my body look great!
4 people like this
@jaiho2009 (39019)
• Philippines
26 Aug 11
I prefer offline. I want to see the product myself and tested it right away. I am the kind of a person who is aggressive in most things, I can't wait to see what I am buying online, so, I better have it offline. have a good day jaiho®
• United States
26 Aug 11
It is nice to have the opportunity to see the item you are going to purchase in person, and be able to give it a good look to see whether it is exactly what you want or not.
4 people like this
@myfb2009 (8304)
• Malaysia
27 Aug 11
Hi Sis Jai, how are you? Indeed shopping offline is great. We can direct feel and test the item that we want before we purchase it. So, avoid the hassle of have to refund in case the item don't suit us.
27 Aug 11
I prefer shopping in mall because I studied this before. :) through internet it has disadvantage, like in sizes of a shirt for example your not 100% sure in size unlike shopping in mall you can fit it. But there is also advantage, less effort this is more convenient to those people who are too much busy in there work and no more time to go to mall to have shopping.
@carmelanirel (20979)
• United States
26 Aug 11
I'd probably prefer off line for many reasons. I can get my item right away and I can make sure it works (electronics) or fits (clothing) Also it is not as expensive when I don't have to pay shipping... Yet for me, many items I have to buy online for various reasons. 1. my small town doesn't carry it. 2. I rarely have a car or able to go out and pick up what I need. 3. Other than the occasional dog sitting, most of my income is made online, which means paypal...
• United States
26 Aug 11
Ah, pro's and con's! Good points!
5 people like this
30 Aug 11
ahhh shipping costs, i didn't factor that in. ALTHOUGH, a lot of products are cheaper online than they are in the stores, so they work out about the same if you get them online, as if you bought them offline :)
1 person likes this
@SydneyJ (903)
• United States
26 Aug 11
I prefer shopping in stores because I can try everything on and see how well it will work where I want it to as well as seeing how I like it on me. Shopping online isn't my favorite but it's good when you are willing to wait for what you bought and you are able to find better deals if you are willing to look around..
• United States
26 Aug 11
Thanks for responding! I agree!
5 people like this
@Voices (153)
• Singapore
26 Aug 11
I prefer shopping online because there is a variety of items to buy from! There are some items that you couldn't get if you walk around the shopping mall. What's more, the price of the items sold online are much cheaper than the stores outside. :3
• United States
26 Aug 11
I agree! You can get almost anything online, especially things that are not even sold in stores! Also, buying items online can indeed save you money. There are a lot of items on sale that you can get online! ... and even when they are not on sale, something can be really cheap!
4 people like this
• United States
26 Aug 11
I prefer off line shopping I have never really bought anything on line I have saw some things that I would like to buy on line I just never gave it a try I guess because I was too scared of all the hackers out there!
• United States
26 Aug 11
You have to be very cautious when shopping online, and make sure you only buy from trusted companies. Otherwise, you could send the money and never get the item, or get something that wasn't exactly what you wanted.
4 people like this
@chrislotz (8203)
• Canada
27 Nov 11
Good day angelee_27 , I do have preferences of what I purchase online. I only purchase things online that I can't get offline, for example, a detox tea I drink every night because of my irretable bowl syndrome. I can't get it anywhere else so I have no choice but to get it online. It comes from the United States and I live in Canada so I also have to pay shipping charges. I get it sent to me every month. I also book all my flights online and my hotel rooms when I go away on a trip. It is just easier to do. I also check-in online on my flights. I have purchased jewelry a few times online, from sites like ebay and amazon, but I have been dissappointed every time so I don't do that anymore. I only buy my jewelry in stores now where I can see what I am buying, same with clothes. Most of the clothes I have purchased online turned out to be make out of cheap material and just not worth the money I paid even if it was cheap. I know a woman that goes to stores and tries on things and gets the codes from them, the bar code, and then goes online and buys it from their store online. It usually turns out to be cheaper. But not all stores let you do that. I know she does it with a shoe store called Aldos. I have thought about doing that but haven't yet. When I find something I like to buy I don't think I want to wait for it. It seems a bit of a hassle to me, I would just rather pick it up right then and there. Cheers and happy mylotting my friend Talk to you soon, Chris
@kry893 (222)
• Canada
1 Sep 11
I do my shopping offline more than I do online. Shopping offline gives me the advantage to be able to scout around and to be able to look at a product carefully before i make a purchase on it. And if I wasn't too sure, I could always ask for assistance. And, if I ever needed to return it or get an exchange for some reasons, I can always do that offline. However, I also shop online for things that I cannot find offline. Some online shops have the products that I want and I can browse however long I want and I needn't ever get to the counter to line up and pay for my product. Besides, I don't need salesperson following me around whenever I shop online. So I guess those are the reasons why I shop online and offline.
30 Aug 11
online!! i hate crowds! i hate people! i hate fighting over things! i hate searching for your size. i hate rude shop assistants. i like to be able to take my time. i hate having to use public transport to head into town because parking is shocking lol! i like getting weird things that you can't get in the shops. so for me. online always :)
• Mexico
28 Aug 11
I love shopping online. Actually, I shop online every time I can. The reason is off course it is way cheaper because most of times you get offered fabricant prices, or bargain offers. It makes it easier to get what you want without going broke. the bad thing about online shopping is the long term it takes to the purchased items to be delivered, some of them may take more than one month, and that is definitively annoying and frustrating, which sometimes leads me to buy in local stores no matter I have to pay a an extra 25%, the instant factor is worth it. Once I purchased 2 books online, and they made me a refund 2 months thereafter. I ended up getting my books 4 months after the date I purchased them. I had already bought them in a local store, which charged me the double I had paid online.
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
28 Aug 11
I like booth, I personally like to see what I am buying most of the time, but it is convenient to shop online. I do not like having to return things from online orders though.
@cerebellum (3871)
• United States
27 Aug 11
I prefer online. I am disabled and shopping offline is very difficult for me. There are some advangages to going to the store though. For one thing it is safer, I worry about giving a credit card number online, also you can look and feel the merchandise. Online there are reviews on most products and I find that very helpful. If I don't buy online, I usually buy through a catalog, but there also you can't see the merchandise yourself.
• Indonesia
27 Aug 11
I prefer shopping offline. because I can try to direct a product before I decide to buy that product. from there I can judge the quality of a product, worth buying or not. besides, after I buy the product, I can bring home. unlike online stores.
@secretbear (19466)
• Philippines
27 Aug 11
Hi Angelee! I prefer shopping offline especially if I'm shopping for clothes. I can always fit the clothes that I like before I decide to buy them unlike in online stores where you cannot fit the clothes you like. And you can always inspect if there's something wrong with the clothes, and if there are, you can always exchange it easily. It's the same with other goods. In offline shopping, you can immediately see if there's defect in the product you want to buy. If there is something wrong, you just call the attention of the sales attendant so you can exchange it for a different stock. Plus, you can always pay in cash if you don't have a credit card.
@thaMARKER (3094)
• Philippines
27 Aug 11
prefer none ehehehe.. I dont like shopping. I seldom go to malls to spend hours and hours just to find that specific object u want. I do online shopping too but i only buy stuff that needs no dressing room.
@derek_a (10902)
27 Aug 11
I too like to shop both on-line and off line. If I want something, I like to do research on the item, reading reviews about the item and checking the price etc. But I do like to look at the item and touch it, to see what it is like to handle. Maybe then I will buy in the store, or go home and order it on-line. It depends on who's offering the best deal. _Derek
@myfb2009 (8304)
• Malaysia
27 Aug 11
Since the cutting for each clothes is difference, i prefer to shop offline for them. At least i can get the chance to try out first before i buy. I prefer only to buy item that suit me without testing through online, like t-shirt and household items. But generally, most of the time i am prefer to shop offline since i can get the items direct in hand after paying. Only when i am in urgent, then no choice i have to shop online or it...
@maezee (32570)
• United States
26 Aug 11
You're right... There are pros and cons to each! The great part about shopping online is that sometimes you can find sizes, varieties, and sales you wouldn't find in-store. There are also a lot of coupon codes/promo codes that you can only use online - which is also helpful in terms of saving money. Also, I love shopping for used books/dvds/other used items on sites like eBay and Amazon - some of this stuff you just couldn't find in person, you know? Downsides? You have to pay for shipping, which is up to an extra $10 (if not more) per transaction, which kind of stinks. I try to stay away from buying heavier things online.. Unless I can't avoid it (or find good discounts/free shipping promotions going on). Another downside is that you (obviously) can't try on the clothes if you plan on buying them online - which stinks - because at least for me, I HAVE to try things on - everything fits so differently and you can never really tell on me whether it's going to look good or not until it's on! And returning things are a pain. So it goes either way, I suppose. Clothes shopping? I prefer in person so I have the option of trying things on.