The integration of the internet with our daily humdrum of life has been a boon as well as a curse. With every click of the mouse, with a tap of the finger, you can get the world at your fingertips. Placing orders online has become an easy task, one which can even be termed as a necessity in many households.
Thanks to virtual stores like Amazon, Flipkart, ShopClues, etc., essential as well as luxury items have become easy to purchase. With the rise of online grocery stores, what are the benefits or cons?
Pros of Online Grocery Stores:
- Easy Access:
With the introduction of online grocery stores, shopping has never been easier. You can get essential everyday items, ranging from pulses, rice, spices, and oil, to fresh and frozen vegetables, dairy, snacks, sanitary kits, and more. You can get the exact amount you need, from mostly verified sources.
- Saves Time:
Purchasing what you need from a physical store is made all the more cumbersome if you have to visit different stores to buy your materials, which is time consuming. Online grocery stores stock up on all your requirements, and some even accept curated lists so that you get everything at one go.
- Home Delivery:
With virtual shopping, you don’t have to lug back everything that you buy online. When you place an order, your items will be delivered to your doorstep after a stipulated amount of time, and sometimes at a nominal cost. This is particularly helpful for elderly or disabled people.
- Compare Costs:
Online shopping provides you with the upperhand when dealing with the cost of items. If an item seems a bit pricey, you can compare prices with a similar product on the same site, or the same product on another online shopping store. There will always be a better deal.
Online stores display a variety of local as well as exotic produce. These stores give you an opportunity to shop on a global scale, and source rare and unusual delicacies, as well as your local fare. Therefore, you don’t have to experience feelings of missing out — you can now make your favorite exotic recipes.
- Phenomenal Discounts:
Online grocery shops are constantly updating their stores, wares and the prices. Online groceries provide many opportunities to access discounts and coupons not found in physical stores. Some companies have special days or periods where you can buy stuff individually, or in bulk, at hugely discounted prices.
- Avoiding Impulse Purchases:
If you are shopping for groceries, chances are you’ve been tempted to buy snacks or biscuits that you don’t really need. However, when the total is billed by the cashier, the final amount becomes extremely high. With online shopping, you can be careful of how much you spend, avoid impulsive purchases, and reconsider the added taxes before checking out and paying for your items.
- Comparatively Lower Costs:
Online groceries are usually cheaper that those that are sold in physical markets. Local items like soaps and shampoos, rice, wheat, oil, dairy products and other essentials are offered at prices comparatively lower than what physical markets offer. This way, you end up spending much less than you usually have to.
- Avoid the Bustling Crowds:
People crowd to departmental stores or their local groceries to get their hands on what they want. Too many people squeezed in a tiny space means you either don’t get what you need, or you have to fight for it. Avoid these hassles by shopping online in the comforts of your own home.
- Shop at Your Leisure:
If you hardly have time to pause or take a break, online grocery shopping is a lifesaver. You can order groceries at all times of the day, and even at night. You can have your groceries delivered at a time slot you are comfortable with.
Cons Of Online Grocery Store:
- Safety of Products:
There have been many instances where groceries delivered by online stores have turned out to be expired, or even rotting. Since you cannot check the expiring date on products while shopping online, you run a risk of encountering spoiled or expired food items, of which you have to be very careful.
- Incorrect Produce:
A common problem with grocery stores online is that you may receive items that are not what you actually ordered. This could be because your order was mixed with another customer’s. Another problem is that you could get less or more of a particular product if you order groceries online, or you may be charged for something you didn’t order in the first place.
- Questionable Delivery:
While you can have groceries delivered to your doorstep, the conditions in which they are delivered are debatable. You may have ordered eggs, and received a broken one or two, or had vegetables crushed due to packaging and shipping. You have to be alert when you receive the package.
- Sudden Cancellations:
Some online groceries provide time slots so that you can receive products at the time you are comfortable. However, online grocers may be forced to cancel your order due to unforeseen circumstances, and you may be left bereft of necessities you needed immediately.
- Unavailability of Customer Service:
If you receive any faulty produce, or your order has been tampered or messed with, the ordinary thing for you to do would be to contact Customer Service. However, some online grocery stores have abysmal Customer Care, so you have to be very careful in choosing a highly praised online grocery store with excellent Customer Service.
Grocery shopping is a tedious activity for some, but with online stores popping up, you don’t need to worry about making lists and lugging back your groceries. Just sit back, kick off your shoes, and order groceries at the tap of a finger on your smartphone or a computer.
However, research an online grocery store thoroughly before you start ordering items. Read up on reviews, check the customer care and products, and move forward once you’ve made a decision.