Business

Online shopping: brave new world or technical nightmare?

Allan Johnson of Johnson & Tennent Chartered Accountants
Allan Johnson of Johnson & Tennent Chartered Accountants Janie Kayes

WHAT'S the big deal with online shopping?

Clearly, quite a lot if you listen to the promoters of Click Frenzy. In case you've been living under a digital rock, today marks a fortnight since the much-hyped 'Sale That Stops a Nation'.

Unfortunately, all it stopped was their servers. Click Frenzy quickly became infamous for being too popular, as angry online shoppers became frustrated and switched to alternative online shopping venues.

But what is the big deal? Bricks-and-mortar retailers would suggest that this is merely another example of the death of traditional in-store shopping...and they would suggest that this is a new phenomenon.

In exactly three weeks and one day, retailers will be bracing themselves for their own Click Frenzy event, commonly known as Boxing Day sales. Once again, there will be severe congestion at the entrance to the store, and while there may not be an electronic breakdown, we've all seen the less-nimble shoppers come off second best!

America's Black Friday is another example of attempts by retailers to orchestrate significant retail sales by having a massive, well-publicised event.

Now, I'm not into shopping, so you may wonder why this is even a consideration for me. Let me tell you a story...

I recently found myself in Sydney with three hours to spare. As my last pair of work shoes had just blown out, I decided to venture into a large department store and find myself a replacement pair. As is typical of a male, this was over very quickly and I was still left with two and a half hours to contemplate that experience!

It occurred to me that the transaction that had just taken place was, for a Rockhampton shoe store, the equivalent of me buying online. I am sure that many readers have purchased items that could have been bought at a local store while they have been visiting larger cities, whether on holidays or business. How many out-of-town people will be participating in Boxing Day sales in Brisbane (as I'm told it's the place to be!)?

To me, online shopping is merely an extension of the age-old problem of out-shopping - where people from Yeppoon shop in Rockhampton, and people from Rockhampton shop in Brisbane or travel to Myer in Mackay. There is absolutely nothing electronic about that, but it still means that the local retailer has missed out.

Shoppers will purchase items wherever they happen to be when they get the urge. The retailer's role is simply to encourage shoppers to have the urge - whether that is online or in person.

Topics:  allan johnson online shopping opinion


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Marine flares responsible for hospital evacuation

Boonah hospital

Bomb squad confirms contents of suspicious package at hospital

Zookeeper who punched kangaroo gets death threats

The man and the kangaroo stood toe-to-toe before he threw a right-hand punch. Image: Steven Stubenrauch/Facebook.

Police called to property after threats made by animal activists

Teachers warned off of wearing pro-refugee t-shirts

Education Minister has stern warning for teachers getting political

Local Partners

Brad Pitt bids to keep custody battle private

Brad Pitt will go to court to keep his custody battle private

Sia has split from her husband

Sia has split from her husband Erik Anders Lang.

Amy Schumer thanks Barbie trolls for hateful comments

Amy Schumer is in the lead role for the new Barbie movie

Shannen Doherty's husband is suing for destroyed sex life

Shannen Doherty's husband is suing her former manager

Azealia Banks' battery case against Russell Crowe dropped

Russell Crowe will not be charged with battery

Mel Gibson named Best Director at AACTA Awards

Mel Gibson poses in the media room after winning the AACTA Award for Best Direction for Hacksaw Ridge.

HIS wartime drama Hacksaw Ridge sweeps 6th annual awards in Sydney.

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

INSIDE STORY: The highlights of your $150 million CBD

GRAND PLAN: The highlights of the Ipswich CBD redevelopment and where they will be located.

Work on city heart's radical transformation to begin next year

VOTE IN OUR POLL: Sand mine opponents face serious dilemma

Public meeting for the proposed sand mine at Maroochydore last week.

Coast MP calls on Minister to stop KRA proposal with stroke of a pen

Developer's grand new multi-million dollar estate

NEW ESTATE: This is the only plan revealed by the property developer's new Billabongs Estate in Agnes Water.

DEVELOPER given the go ahead for a massive estate with 149 homes.

Couple's desperate $550K price drop to sell Gladstone home

Brian Headley and Kirstene Staib are selling their Kin Kora mansion for $750,000.

TELL tale sign of Gladstone's property market.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!