Online Shopping

Hello World

What is all this online shopping really about

What gets us hooked into online shopping

How many of us are addicted to online shopping

How many of us love the comfort of online shopping

Why are people all over the world choosing online shopping at epic proportions.

Would it be true to say that most of us – the masses who have a smart phone or another digital device subscribe to online shopping as it is part of the tech culture.

Next – a few facts

GLOBAL

2018
1.8 billion people worldwide purchased goods online (1)

47.3%         Digital buyers’ penetration worldwide  
This means as a percentage % of Internet users who are buying online (2)

$2.8 trillion US dollars – Global e-retail sales (1)

2021
$4.8 trillion US dollars projection growth (1)

2.14 billion people worldwide expected buy online goods and services (3)

Hello

$2,800,000,000,000
Is this just a number to us

Can we get our head around this figure

This is what we were spending last year and we are being told that this will go up within just two years to $4,800,000,000,000.

2,400,000,000 people will be online shopping

There are no words really that can bring the depth needed to say this is big bucks and a lot of bucks if we are being Honest.

It is speaking volumes to us about our shopping habits and how we have created another worldwide epidemic.

ADD to this ALL that we do not know, or statistics cannot tell us like purchases made on the dark web, which most of us know does exist and has its own world operating underneath the Internet.

WHY are the global statistics telling us that online shopping is here to stay as we are demanding it.

WHY is online shopping such big business with the industry growing at epic proportions.

WHY are our delivery people always knocking on our door as we have a habit of doing online shopping most days.

WHY are we always asking our neighbours to take in our deliveries as we order so much online.

WHY are we happy for someone to do our shopping instead of going to the supermarket and feeling what to buy and not buy.

WHY do we want things at the tap of a button in the comfort of our home, instead of making the movement to actually go to the shops.

WHY would we rather look at a screen and be fed those images in our head and then press buttons instead of having the tangible experience of shopping in real life.

WHY do we habitually go online shopping as we just want to avoid having another FOMO episode.

WHY do many of us never bother to check how much we spend with this online shopping stuff.

WHY do we get so desperate to find bargains on Black Friday and Mad Monday.

WHY are we told in the media that Christmas Day  online shopping is at record high levels. (4)

WHY is there a Singles Day when people buy themselves a gift on 11 November. (5)

WHY have we got Cyber Monday and what happens with online shopping the first Monday after Thanksgiving.

WHY do we get hooked into buying things from a screen and never thinking about the consequences.

WHY have we made it normal to order different sizes just to ‘try on’ as this suits our lifestyle.

WHY are we the first to complain about this, that and the other when it comes to online shopping.

WHY is this online shopping stuff full of choices choices

Researchers have found that being overwhelmed with options can cause an adverse experience called “choice overload” (Sheena Iyengar) or “The Paradox of Choice” (Barry Schwartz, 2007).

We gravitate to companies that offer more options versus fewer ones, because we believe a large selection will maximise our chances of finding the best fit. But we can become paralysed in making a decision with all of these options and avoid making choices altogether.

When we do finally make a decision we are more dissatisfied and regretful about whatever choice we have made.

Research has found that when participants choose from many options they felt more invested in the decision: their hearts beat harder and faster but their arteries also constricted – a sign that they also felt less confident about their decision.
(Saltsman, Seery, Kondrak, Lamarche & Streamer, 2019)

Even minor exposures to this kind of cardiac activity are believed to have long term health consequences if they happen enough; they’re connected to certain types of Heart Disease1 and Hypertension. (6)

Hello

Is the above telling us about a no win situation

WHY are we overwhelmed in the first place

WHY do we become paralysed in making decisions

WHY do we then avoid making any decision at all

WHY are we gravitating towards these companies

WHY is all this stuff not really making any sense

WHY are we not stopping to ask some Questions

NEXT –

If we are being very Honest – how many of us are actually suffering from this “choice overload”.

Are we aware of the physiological impact this has when we do our online shopping.

Do we get it – even a MINOR exposure to this type of online shopping can have serious health consequences.

NEXT –

Is the hardness in our heart, which of course is trying to communicate something, causing the arteries to constrict because it feels pressure because our heart just knows SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT.

Is this something we need to consider as it is important

WHY are we being unrealistic with our online shopping purchases.

WHY do we override the gross inconvenience of returning goods as they are not what we want from online shopping.

WHY do we never stop and ask how come we are always returning items and it has become so normal to do so.

WHY have we subscribed to paying additional costs for online shopping so we get next day delivery.

WHY are we willing to pay the extra postal costs just so we can have our online shopping delivered sooner.

WHY have we made online shopping which involves little movement our preferred way to purchase.

WHY is India now taking over with top sites when we google about online shopping.

GLOBAL

2017

China  
Highest online shopping penetration rate – % of people that shop online (1)

E-Commerce
Commercial transactions conducted online
We are involved in e-commerce whenever we buy and sell using the Internet (7)

Top 10 Countries
Retail E-Commerce Sales – % of Total Retail Sales

2018

18%                   UK  

16.6%                China

12.7%                Norway

12%                   South Korea

11.5%                Finland

11.2%                Germany

10.8%                Denmark

8.9%                  US

8.2%                  Canada

6.7%                  Japan (2)

Hello

What are these figures actually telling us

What is driving the high percentage in UK that puts them at the top of the chart.

Is there a correlation with high online shopping sales and a rise in heart conditions in the UK.

Are we going to wait for more research or can we at least consider this pertinent question. 

37% Age 30 – 39 shop online at least once a week (2)
Clothing Most popular online shopping category
Smartphones Number 1 device for retail website visits

In recent years, mobile shopping has been on the rise, with customers increasingly using their mobile devices for various online shopping activities. (1)

Convenience and competitive price are why some choose to shop online

Digital buyers can be influenced by brand emails and product reviews (7)

USA

One of the leading online retail markets (8)

2018                        

$517.36 billion – consumer online spending with U.S. merchants (9)

UK

2017

£586 billion   Value e-commerce sales (10)
£80 billion E-Commerce sales went up in 2016 – 2017 (11)
19.9%  Online retailing accounted for % of total retailing
  July 2019 (12)

2021 

93%   Internet users expected to do online shopping
  Highest online penetration rate in Europe (10)    

More Empty Shops on UK High Streets (13)

2018   1 in every £5 spent in UK shops is now online
2013 1 in every £10

3 shops closing on UK high streets every day
Online competition a factor

“Internet shopping is clearly extremely popular with consumers because of its convenience, though it does take a toll on the high street.”
Laith Khalaf – senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown – investment service

50%    Over 65s now shop on the internet (14)
2029 Internet expected account for 53% of retail sales

25 – 44 age group far more likely to buy clothing, books, electrical goods or food online compared to those over 55. (15)

1 in 15 online purchases made between 12 midnight and 6am

Nocturnal shoppers spent the most on flights and holiday bookings

10 most searched for items – duvet covers, sofa beds and headphones
Research by John Lewis Partnership Card (2019) (16)

Hello Hello

We have 3 shops closing every single day on the high street in the UK.

What about all the job losses

What about all the unsold stock

What about all the empty shops

How does this really affect the towns and the people who live there.

Next –

What is all this online shopping at night time all about

Have we considered that online shopping could be a self medication because we are not able to Sleep.

Have we worked out why sleeping aids is a multi billion dollar industry in our world today. (16)

Does it make sense to do online shopping in the middle of the night when we KNOW we have sleep problems.

Is staying up shopping in the night going to add to the exhaustion we feel during the day.

Is our online night time shopping like a Drug and we just want more of the same to get the buzz we need.

Are we aware that online shopping at night when our body needs rest and sleep is having a harmfull effect on us.

Are we booking Holidays at night as a form of escape in our minds as we are way too tired to think clearly.

Are we joining the dots and adding up that shopping online at night will have an affect on our moods the next day.

Are we using online shopping at night simply because we are fighting what is natural – Sleep.

Could it be possible that choosing to do online shopping at night instead of sleeping is going against our natural cycle and this will have an effect on our body.

Dear World

What we ALL know is that our body is not made to stay up at night and we ALL know that sleep is natural and very important.

Trying to go against something that is natural will have consequences and so it is no surprise that we have a world full of Solutions to help us sleep because we have lost our way when it comes to sleep.

Reading the forensic blog about Sleep on this website will leave the reader in no doubt of the value of sleep and adhering to this natural cycle.

If we are Honest – how do we feel about having to consistently return items which is such an inconvenience.

If we are being honest – how do we feel when the package arrives at an inconvenient time.

If we are to be honest – how content are we with life in general and does something trigger us to do online shopping.

If we are being very honest – how do we feel about the unopened packages sitting in our hallway, because we have no time to open them as life is way too busy and that is why we are doing online shopping, but somewhere along the line our strategy is not working and instead of stopping and asking Questions we just continue our habit of buying.

If we are being totally honest – how much time are we wasting if we add up the whole thing with online shopping.

Example – we buy several sizes and then different colours or even different styles just to see what we want. That means one item needed but we order heaps more to cover all the choices we want. Not once have we considered what resources are needed to make this happen.

NEXT –

Do we use online shopping to fill a void – an emptiness inside us that just won’t go away.

Do we use online shopping to give us that buzz which stimulates us as life without that is flat and dead.

Do we use online shopping because it’s quick and easy and the plastic card always takes care of it.

Do we use online shopping because we have the money so why not just spend it.

Do we use online shopping with no meaning or purpose but simply because it stops us getting Bored with Life.

Do we use online shopping as a Priority to keep up with the latest trends we see on Social Media.

Do we see an ad and want it regardless, so the best and Fast way is to go online shopping for it.

Do we use online shopping to get ahead and have it first before others do.

Do we use online shopping to buy cheap stuff and sell it on so we can profit in this way.

Do we use online shopping hoping we can make a quick killing by getting cheap prices.

Do we use online shopping with the responsibility of knowing that there is a purpose to what we are buying.

Do we ask our partner and neighbours to deal with our online shopping returns as this is not a task we want to take responsibility for.

Are we the talk in our street as we have deliveries arriving daily from our online shopping behaviour.

Are we up for doing online shopping for others as we just like this way of shopping in front of a screen.

Are we living with someone who is constantly buying online and has no desire to change their shopping habits.

Are we Bored on the train journey home so we spend our time shopping online, even for things we don’t need.

Are we putting up with things from online shopping because the thought of re-packaging and returning the goods is way too much effort for us.

Are we piling up the unwanted stuff from online shopping and it is taking up space in our home and we have no intention of dealing with it.

Could it be possible that online shopping is giving us what we are demanding.

In other words, we want this type of experience and so the suppliers supply to the demand.

Online Opioids Scandal
September 2019

Online pharmacies are prescribing powerful Opioids without consulting GPs in breach of new regulations – Times newspaper investigation has found.

Undercover reporter bought hundreds of painkillers from five registered internet chemists, without providing details of a doctor.  All of them dispensed the drugs. One pharmacy issued 200 tablets of dihydrocodeine – an opioid twice as powerful as codeine, without consulting a GP.

The newspaper was able to order another batch from the same company the next day, in breach of its own policy.

Britain’s top medical bodies have demanded an urgent investigation in light of the findings.

2,000 fatalities each year – more than five every day
Due to the powerful painkillers – up by 41% from ten years ago

Number of Britons taken to hospital after overdosing has almost doubled in the past decade.

April 2019 – after an increase in the number of people addicted to opioids, the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) tightened regulations for online chemists over drugs liable to abuse.

The council required that the prescriber must have contacted the patient’s doctor “in advance of issuing a prescription and that the GP has confirmed to the prescriber that the prescription is appropriate for the patient”.

Each of the pharmacies in this investigation agreed to dispense the drugs without speaking to the reporter’s GP first.

All that was required was to fill in an online questionnaire and a photo of a passport.

The questionnaires are assessed by a doctor, often based elsewhere in Europe due to a loophole, before a prescription is issued to be dispensed by a pharmacy. The drugs can be fast tracked to arrive the next day.

During the questionnaire, a red message flashed up if answers were entered that would lead to the drugs not being prescribed. The answers can then easily be changed.

The Royal College of Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) called for an urgent investigation into the findings and the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) praised the investigations.

Experts have warned that online pharmacies are helping to fuel an opioid epidemic. (17)

Is online shopping so easy for us that we can literally get what we want anytime.

Have we realised that whatever we need, there will always be someone out there selling it to us.

Are we blaming suppliers or can we admit they only exist because we the customer are demanding it.

And finally –

Dear World

What are we avoiding when we choose to hook into online shopping habits.

Can we admit that we are using online shopping as a form of self-medication.

Are we joining the masses and following what has now become the norm with online shopping.

Are we stopping long enough to contemplate the consequences of our shopping behaviour.

Is online shopping the actual issue or are there more Questions now for us to consider.

Could it be possible we have deviated from the good old fashion way that worked, where we had real connection with those who offered us goods and services.

Our world today has become a place where we can literally get anything we desire at anytime because online shopping has been created.

At what cost

Is it worth it

 

References

(1) Clement, J. (2019, March 12). E-commerce Worldwide – Statistics & Facts. Statista. Retrieved October 1, 2019 from
https://www.statista.com/topics/871/online-shopping/

(2) Saleh, K. (n.d). Global Online Retail Spending – Statistics and Trends. Invesp. Retrieved October 4, 2019 from
https://www.invespcro.com/blog/global-online-retail-spending-statistics-and-trends/

(3) (2019). Number of Digital Buyers Worldwide from 2014 to 2021 (in billions). Statista. Retrieved October 2, 2019 from
https://www.statista.com/statistics/251666/number-of-digital-buyers-worldwide/

(4) Morley, K. (2018, December 19). Shoppers Predicted to Spend £1bn on Christmas Day for the First Time. The Telegraph. Retrieved October 6, 2019 from
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/12/19/shoppers-predicted-spend-1bn-christmas-day-first-time/

(5) Blackley, N. (2017, November 9). China’s Singles Day Retail Phenomenon Will Blow Black Friday Out the Water. Independent. Retrieved October 5, 2019 from https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/how-china-s-singles-day-black-friday-a8043346.html

(6) Saltsman, T. (2019, February 10). Why Having Too Many Choices is Making Us Miserable. Fast Company. Retrieved October 3, 2019 from
https://www.fastcompany.com/90411925/having-too-many-choices-is-making-us-miserable

(7) (n.d). What is Ecommerce? Ecommerce Guide. Retrieved October 3, 2019 from
https://ecommerceguide.com/guides/what-is-ecommerce/

(8) (2019). Number of Digital Buyers Worldwide from 2014 to 2021 (in billions). Statista. Retrieved October 2, 2019 from
https://www.statista.com/statistics/251666/number-of-digital-buyers-worldwide/

(9) Ali, F. (2019, February 28). US Ecommerce Sales Grow 15.0% in 2018. Digital Commerce 360. Retrieved October 2, 2019 from
https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/article/us-ecommerce-sales/

(10) O’Dea, S. (2019, July 31). E-Commerce in the United Kingdom (UK) – Statistics & Facts. Statista. Retrieved October 3, 2019 from
https://www.statista.com/topics/2333/e-commerce-in-the-united-kingdom/

(11) (2019). E-Commerce Sales in the United Kingdom (UK) from 2014 to 2017 (in billion GBP). Statista. Retrieved October 3, 2019 from
https://www.statista.com/statistics/282162/e-commerce-annual-sales-in-the-united-kingdom-uk/

(12) (2019, August 15). Retail Sales, Great Britain: July 2019. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved October 3, 2019 from
https://www.ons.gov.uk/businessindustryandtrade/retailindustry/bulletins/retailsales/july2019

(13) Simpson, E. (2019, September 11). High Street: How Many UK Shops Have Closed? BBC News. Retrieved October 4, 2019 from
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-49349703

(14) Morley, K. (2018, August 16). One in Every Five Pounds Spent with UK Retailers is Now Online, Figures Show. The Telegraph. Retrieved October 4, 2019 from
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/08/16/one-every-five-pounds-spent-uk-retailers-now-online-figures/

(15)  Butler, S. (2019, July 9). Half of UK Retail Sales Will Be Online Within 10 Years, Report Predicts. The Guardian. Retrieved October 1, 2019 from
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/jul/09/half-of-uk-retail-sales-will-be-online-within-10-years-report-predicts

(16) Barrett, C. (2019, September 14). Rise of the ‘Nocturnal Shopper’. Financial Times. Retrieved October 4, 2019 from
https://www.ft.com/content/acc799c0-d62e-11e9-8367-807ebd53ab77 14

(16) (2015, July 31). Global Sleep Aids Market Will Reach US$80.8 Bn by 2020: Persistence Market Research. GlobeNewswire. Retrieved October 7, 2019 from
https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2015/07/31/756724/10144080/en/Global-Sleep-Aids-Market-Will-Reach-US-80-8-Bn-by-2020-Persistence-Market-Research.html

(17) Ellery, B. (2019, September 28). Online Opioids Scandal. The Times. pp. 1 – 2

 

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Comments 1

  1. Thank you for this excellent blog.

    Recently, I have been very conscious of the fact that online shopping has become a distribution method for some smugglers.

    This is because someone I know committed suicide recently by ingesting Nembutal that was bought online.

    Nembutal is a barbiturate that is used for lethal injection at prison executions in some American states. In the UK, it is a controlled substance that is sometimes used for the euthanasia of animals.

    The person I know who bought Nembutal online purchased it from a supplier in Mexico who posted the drugs in packaging designed to make this controlled substance look like a cosmetic product.

    So, following an online purchase, a lethal poison came half way around the world disguised as a facial cleansing product.

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