Non-Scientific Survey: Is It Better to Shop Online or in a Store?
And the best items to buy from each
Are you the type of shopper who has to get up close and personal with everything you buy? Or are you a multitasker who likes to shop while you work, watch TV or eat nachos in your underwear? Let’s weigh the good and the bad.
PROS FOR SHOPPING ONLINE
You can compare prices quickly. Online shopping lets you check out multiple retailers without actually dragging your physical self around to each one (i.e., time for more shoppinggggg).
You’ll have a wider selection. The Internet, as we all know, is a big place. So whether you’re on the hunt for the perfect fall trench or just some new super-soft, perfect-for-Netflix-binging sweats, the inventory online is infinitely more extensive than anything a single store can provide.
The world is your oyster. Be it a vintage shop in Portland or a luxury boutique in Paris, you can peruse without that oh-so-critical plane ticket (or, again, even putting on pants).
PROS FOR SHOPPING IN A STORE
You can, ya know, touch stuff. There’s no substitute for inspecting products in person to make sure they’re up to snuff. Research shows that customers buy more when they can actually see and feel the items they’re interested in. (Just be wary of the impulse buy.)
You’ll get live customer service. Physical stores require a physical workforce--folks who know the stock inside and out. That, and they can offer opinions on how banging you look in that pencil skirt.
You can support local businesses. Shopping in your own 'hood means a domino effect of economic growth in your local area. So you get the goods you need and keep your town awesome. Double whammy.
OUR PICKS FOR EACH
Unique pieces you’d never find in your town (hello, statement coat)
Staples in which you’re confident of the fit (like T-shirts, pj's and sweaters)
Deals and sales that are too good not to risk (yes, that $15 off-season swimsuit is worth it)
Jeans (or risk getting way too friendly with your post-office clerks)
Event-specific anything (we rarely have a last-minute cocktail dress that arrives on time)
Holiday presents, just not at the mall (half the fun of Christmas is poking around sweet local shops)