, June 2009 Stop Before You Shop: June 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Interview Session With E-Shopper


Well hello! Today we will have someone to share her experience of shopping online with us! Hopefully there's an abundant of information for e-shoppers out there to research on. :)

E-Shopper: Amy
Interviewer: Janice

Janice: How are you exposed to shopping online?
Amy: Through internet

Janice:Do you prefer online shopping or reality shopping? And why is that so?
Amy: I prefer reality shopping now because of the fear of getting different products than ordered.

Janice: Based on your experiences, do the sellers did what they said online?
(For example, delivered on time, discounts given, etc)
Amy: Yes. Most of them do.

Janice: What do you usually shop for online?
Amy: Clothes.

Janice: What will be your main concerns when it comes to shopping online?
Amy: Afraid the seller will not deliver the items because money has already transactioned.

Janice: In your opinion, does online shopping bring more good than harm, or vice versa?
Amy: I think harm will bring more than good.

Janice: Will you buy branded goods sold at cheaper price online?
(For example, cosmetics, bags, clothes, contact lenses, etc)
Amy: I will not buy because they might give fake goods.

Janice: Is there anything you would like to comment regarding online shopping?
Amy: Online shopping will get you addicted but beware of the harms it might bring.

So as we can see, it indeed is an eye opener for new shoppers so make use of this information and don't get carried away by the Red Hot Deals!

Do you agree with the interviewee or otherwise?
Please feel free to drop us your comments/opinions and if there's any question you would like to ask, please do and we will get back to you as soon as possible. :)

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Addiction - Why it happens.

http://sn.im/kv3a0

Hello readers!

So far, we've observed that online shopping in Malaysia has yet to blossom to it's full potential, though it is generally agreed that the future of retail therapy is turning more and more towards the Internet.

So, before e-shopping mania hits our Malaysian shores, here's the lowdown on Online Shopping addiction (when retail therapy turns ugly), a new but infectious disease that is spreading across developed countries such as the United States and Europe.

First of all, how do people get into this craze ANYWAY? Here's a quick recap on why Online Shopping is so addictive (don't laugh - you might be next.)

1) CONVENIENCE - No more having to wait in line at the cashier! No more spending hours hiking the malls for that silly shoe you want. No more parking problems! You don't even need to pay petrol prices, tolls, and parking fees! No hassle, no crowds, no having to wait forever to get to the changing room/ find a salesgirl. SWEET!

2) DO MORE, FASTER - You don't have to flag down that slowpoke sales assistant to get you that shoe in that size and that color, and hover around waiting forever while she digs it out from the storeroom. You can just click, click and DONE. With only mouse-clicks, you can easily get everything you want, in whatever color and size you want, and be done with it.

3) FUN - There's a real satisfaction when you start auctioning for something, or hitting the exclusive online sales the second it opens, or even swapping helpful and exciting information on the best sites on the 'Net to get stuff over forums. It's like a game, and it makes you feel good that other people are giving you reliable advice and appreciating your input too.


As the years go on, and technology integrates itself into our daily lives more and more, I think it is inevitable that soon all Malaysians will be exposed to online shopping. But while it may be fun, I think it is very important to never do anything in extreme. Online Shopping addiction can produce some very serious problems in our lives, and we'll be talking about those effects next.

In the meantime, what do you think can be done to cure online shopping addiction?

Reference:

Net Addiction, What is eBay addiction, compulsive online gambling, and other types of Internet addiction?, NetAddiction.net [online], Retrieved 25th June 2009
URL: http://www.netaddiction.com/net_compulsions.htm



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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Weekly Poll Analysis

http://sn.im/kv3fj

Weekly Poll AnalysisAccording to the poll above, we can conclude that none of the voters preferred online shopping while 100% (7 votes) preferred to shop in reality.

This might be due to the previous security and quality purposes and since online shopping is not a highly practiced trend in our country because the negative views and impacts are higher than positives ones. The prices for online purchases are almost the same as in reality shopping so customers thought why are they paying for worries? It's much more better to shop in shops and buy straight away with what they are satisfied with. Furthermore, it is not really safe yet in our country as there are many fraud cases. So reality shopping is so much more preferred than online shopping.

Do you think Malaysia will be able to practice online shopping and expand the market in the future with lesser negative impacts?

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Real deal? Rip off? How do I know??

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So guys, how do you know if that Louis Vuitton bag, Dior lip gloss or Chanel purse you have had yor eye on in the e-shop is the real deal or just another counterfeit produced in China. Fact is, you have no sure fire way of telling if it is a genuine or a faker hoping to pass itself off as the real thing.

What if the e-shop states that it is an original?

Many sites do claim that what they are selling original merchandise. However, you cannot be sure if that online merchant is being honest or not. Even if they state that they have proof that their product is the "real McCoy"and some may even produce certificates stating that the product is real, it is still inadvisable to purchase so called authentic branded goods from online stores because you cannot count on the item's authenticity. Some of these replicas may look and feel like the

If you do want to buy branded goods online and be 100% sure that what you are paying thousands for is the real deal, it is highly recommended that you purchase the branded goods at the brand's Official Online Store such as http://www.diorcouture.com/, http://www.louisvuitton.com/ and so on so forth. Now then you will know that you are not being fooled and you will then receive your 100% original product. And you can sleep well knowing that your money was well spent.

As a precaution, please make sure that the brand site that you are browsing is also the real site, as there are many mock up sites tailored to look as thought it is the real site.

That's all for today readers! Hope this nugget of information is useful for you. Anyways, thanks for reading and have a great day! (:


Would it be better to purchase a branded item at the official store or online, on its official website?

Friday, June 19, 2009

Safe online shopping tips from Gary Rosenzweig

http://snipurl.com/kez0a






























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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Where can I find E-shop sites?

http://snipurl.com/kez23

Hey readers!

Today, we're gonna tell you something you've been absolutely waiting for!!

WHERE TO FIND E-SHOPS!!

Yes, after the ample amount of information we have provided you guys so far, I'm sure you're dying to check out some E-shops yourself. So here it is!


Shopping Clicks
For all you girls who want to know whats the latest update in the E-shops, you can visit http://shoppingclicks.blogspot.com/. This site has the latest updates on what is new in the local e-shops, as well as reviews on items ranging from shoes, bag, accessories, clothes and so much more!


shoppy.com.my

If that's not enough you can also visit http://www.shoppy.com.my/ for more choices if what to shop such as home decor, gardening tools, kitchen ware and etc.


Shopping Roll
The next popular site frequented by online shoppers like you is http://shoppingroll.blogspot.com/. They provide product reviews, write ups and up to date posts on what's hot and whats not.


These are some of the e-shopping directories for today, just click the banners or the links that I've provided and you will be directed to the respecting sites and be prepared for a night without sleep, cause there's gonna be tons of e-shops to explore.

Happy shopping!



What do you think a good online shopping directory should consist of?



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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Weekly Poll Analysis

http://sn.im/kdj5e


Weekly Poll Analysis

The pie chart above shows that all 10 of the voters prefer payment on delivery, with no one in support of payment before delivery.

From this week's poll, we can therefore safely conclude that Malaysian online shoppers are very much a careful and sensible group of people, who insist on seeing the real deal and checking it over for damages before paying for it. This is a very commendable thing to do, in my opinion, because why pay for damaged goods? If That would be like a rip-off, like being cheated.

It appears that the "prepaid" business transaction concept is applicable only to phone credit. But there are times when you do have to pay before you get the goods, as the products may take time to be shipped to your home, or the bill is already deducted from your bank account, if you pay via credit card, for example. Or you have to provide a non-refundable deposit on your product.

So what then? If to buy your much desired product means you have to pay beforehand, would you still buy it and take the risk, or would you just click away to another alternative that allows payment upon delivery. Which would you choose?


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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Online Shopping vs Reality Shopping


Hallo! So after the previous poll questions, let's review on the pros and cons of
online and reality shopping.

Online Shopping [Pros]
Saves time
Obviously it saves you time because you don't need to go through all the shops or get stuck in the traffic or bargain your way with the promoter.

A click away
All is done with just a click on the mouse and all you have to do is just PAY & WAIT.

Price
Some of the shops online sell bargain goods so you might want to opt for online shopping if you're on a tight budget and wanted new clothes desperately. *wink.

Online Shopping [Cons]
Quality
The product might not meet your expectations in quality wise and you may encounter dissonance and develop a negative perception towards online shopping.

Security
The factor that majority have them mingled in their head most of the time. Some sites may be a phishing site and its not safe when you reveal your address to where they have to deliver your goods to. So online shoppers have to be extra cautious.

Reality Shopping [Pros]
Quality
You get to touch, see and feel the quality of the product so you will not feel cheated. You know whether the price is worth the goods.

Satisfaction
You don't need to worry about your satisfactory level or worry how your product will turn out to be. Products chosen or bought with your own hands somehow will not disappoint you much.

Reality Shopping [Cons]
Unexpected expenditures
You might overspend on stuffs you like but of no use to you. Usually lightings and musics attract customers and increase their likeliness to buy something from their shops. This may end up you being a spendthrift and you will regret much after you bought it home.

Time
Much more time is indeed needed for reality shopping. You have to go shops to shops and if you're fussy enough, you might end up going to each and every store for a survey before you started buying. :D

So readers, do you agree on unexpected expenditures whenever you go to some nice and comfortable shops and just buy stuffs which are of not much use and it looks nice there but somehow it doesn't when you got home??

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Delivery Methods and Charges

http://sn.im/kdivw

Hello readers! Besides having to pay for the products you just purchased online, you might also have to pay for delivery charges.

This varies depending on the delivery methods. We'll be focusing on what usually occurs in Malaysia.

1. Delivery service. It can be UPS (for large quantities of products) or the company's own delivery trucks (like how Amway has their own fleet of delivery trucks). This can mean that there will be an extra charge for having the stuff delivered to your doorstep, and the amount of extra cost will defer from business to business. For example, Amway is a direct-selling company that very strongly utilizes the Internet as a means to order their products, and Amway provides free delivery if your order exceeds RM300. Others might charge you extra depending on the amount of products purchased and how far away you stay from the seller's location.

2. Snail Mail. For small-scale, imperishable online purchases, most sellers would opt for sending it by express mail (PosLaju). The extra cost for this method varies depending on the product's size and weight. Of course, by using this method, your stuff should arrive within the week, and not within a day or two. Snail Mail is Snail Mail, after all.

3. Cash On Delivery (COD). Another method, especially for small-scale online purchases, is where the seller meets up with the buyer and they exchange the goods for cash on the spot. They usually meet at a common location that is easily accessible to both parties, like the McDonald's at the nearest shopping mall or something similiar. This can also apply for buyers who order products like handphones through sellers/suppliers. In this case, the buyers would be notified of when the product reaches the seller's store, and then the buyers would go collect.

For example, if I were to order a handphone from a seller online through lowyat.net, the seller would then notify me when the handphone has arrived in their shop, and then I might have to go to their shop personally to pay for my handphone.


That about wraps it up this week. What do you think about the delivery methods in Malaysia? Are there any ways we can improve this aspect of online shopping in Malaysia?


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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Weekly Poll Analysis

Weekly Poll Analysis

The graph above shows why people DO NOT prefer to shop online based on security, quality, and both security and quality options. Out of the 6 votes, 2 votes (33%) goes to security purposes, none voted for quality and 4 votes (67%) goes to both security and quality.

Through this graph, we can conclude that most people are concerned on security and quality purposes rather than quality alone. If they are rest assured in terms of security and quality of products are satisfying, customers will eventually build more trust in online shopping, which proves to be a risky action especially to new online shoppers.
Security purposes are taken into consideration because some people feel that quality doesn't matter much as long as they are secured.
Quality is not something we can argue because we have to be mentally prepared to not get the product as we perceived on how they will be. Usually goods on cheaper price turned out not as they are, such as lower quality, different product, or something which is similar of function to ordered items.
Of course, majority will prefer to have both so they can benefit from online shopping.

Thus, what's your opinion? Do you think you will continue to shop online if the goods' quality is not guaranteed but security is?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Payment methods

After spotting that ''perfect'' dress in the online shop you've just found and have decided that you're going to buy it, you must be wondering, " How do I pay for it?". Well, fear not! In this post, we will tell you the common methods of paying for your merchandise in Malaysia.

One of the few methods of paying for your merchandise is by a method called COD. COD stands for Cash on Delivery where you pay your online merchant when you and him/her meet to collect your merchandise.
http://www.songwriter.co.uk/img9477.jpg
PayPal is the most popular and safest online payment company [Online] , Retrieved 7th June 2009.
URL: http://www.chinahighlights.com/aboutus/member/paypal.htm



The next method of payment would be through PayPal. PayPal is a service that allows people to send money to whomever has an email address and then the
fund are drawn from the consumer's credit card, debit card or checking account.

http://www.topnews.in/files/online-payment.jpg

Online Payments: Balancing security and convenience by Mohit Joshi [Online] , Retrieved 7th June 2009.
URL: http://www.topnews.in/technology-update/computers?page=12



Lastly, the method of paying would be through cheque where the purchaser which is you, writes out a cheque and sends it to the merchant. After receiving your cheque, the merchant then sends the item to you.

Voila! These are the most common methods of payment used by online merchants in Malaysia. However, one should be careful not to release any important information to these online merchants.

Do you think it is safe using any of these methods of payment?


Referencing/ Further reading:

PayPal Website,[Online] Retrieved on 7th Jun 2009,
URL: https://www.paypal.com/



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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

구매 및 판매 도메인 이름 [Buying and Selling Domain Names]

According to a secondary source I've found, online shopping now even includes buying and selling of domain names at an outstanding price!
It is a Malaysian blog but it is in Hangul (Korean language) for the convenience of Koreans living in and out of our country to share and exchange information.
*Translated websites are not so up-to-date so the most recent with relevance to our topic is posted on February 2009.

Buying and Selling Domain NamesBuying and Selling Domain Names [Online] , Retrieved 1st June 2009.
URL: http://imdavidlee.com/ko/buying-and-selling-domain-name/

According to the paragraph stated on the post, growth of domain names few years back has decreased the availability nowadays. This is because most of the names are used to be invested and sold, so 'quality domain names' [우수한 도메인 이름의] are now sold at higher prices.


Buying and Selling Domain NamesBuying and Selling Domain Names [Online] , Retrieved 1st June 2009.
URL: http://imdavidlee.com/ko/buying-and-selling-domain-name/

For the last paragraph, "당신이 살 수있는 Domaining와 이익을 위해 판매하는 인터넷 기업이다" states that domaining is an Internet business which you can sell for profits. Another term for domain name is web address and they come in different extensions, having the most popular and common one is .com.
Other extensions can come with .biz, .org, .net, .mobi, etc.
You can update it annually, start a website with it, or maybe sell in on eBay. You may even park it somewhere in the web where you can profit from advertisements.
Hence, there are few ways you can eventually profit from being a domainer.

Based on the secondary source I obtained, do you start to think that shopping online can actually come in different ways and that such a simple click will profit you up to 5 or 6 figures??

Online Referencing/Further Reading:-
http://imdavidlee.com/ko/buying-and-selling-domain-name/
Translator:-
http://translate.google.com/translate

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

How to ensure safe online shopping

Hello readers! Moving on from our previous post on how to do online shopping, the next logical question is HOW TO MAKE SURE WE DON'T GET CONNED/LOSE MONEY/CREDIT CARD NUMBER STOLEN etc.

So the following are several guidelines that an e-shopper should observe to generally avoid any mishaps when making sale transactions online.

1. CREATE A STRONG PASSWORD! Passwords like your grandmother's name, your birthdate, your e-mail address and so on is NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!! And this applies to every other site which requires login information, so we strongly recommend everyone to create a password that is at least 6 characters long (this is a requirement on most sites) and with a mixture of ALPHABETS, NUMBERS and SYMBOLS, preferably chosen at random. So, instead of a password like:

EstherHo

It should be something like:

Krub3rs!@46

Reason - because this makes it harder for people to guess your password. And also, DO NOT TELL ANYONE YOUR PASSWORD an with similiar importance, CHANGE YOUR PASSWORDS REGULARLY!!! If you need help remembering your password, perhaps write it down and keep it in a secret spot in your room.

2. BE VERY CAREFUL about the company's policies, especially the RETURN POLICY. As there are so many sites from professional websites to blog shops, the entire way they run is different, so the best thing to do is to NOT ASSUME your product can be returned and fully refunded etc. and pay very close attention to their policies. Send an e-mail to ask if necessary before buying anything.

3. WATCH OUT FOR e-mails requesting personal information. Some "fishy" e-mails are sometimes sent to you that will provide you with a special discount/ promotion if you give them your personal information. If you get that, STOP, DROP AND ROLL (the mouse away)! It could be a phishing scam, and if you agreed to it, you might have just given a theif full access to your bank account or worse. REMEMBER: REAL SITES NEVER ASK FOR PERSONAL INFORMATION such as your password, your credit card number, your address, your IC no., your mother's maiden name etc.

4. GUARANTEE that there is a guarantee. It is best if the site you shop at has a "product delivery guarantee" or a "money back guarantee" and the like. This helps if there is a hiccup in the process. Another tip here is to ALWAYS KEEP HARD COPIES OF ALL TRANSACTIONS. You need the evidence.

5. SHOP AT THE RIGHT TIME. So you know that around Christmas everyone will be using every way they can to get those last-minute gifts, so the sites will be bogged down with extra traffic, sales and then extra deliveries. Therefore, to prevent your product from being lost, misdelivered, delayed or just plain forgotten - SHOP BEFOREHAND. Sometimes off-season products are sold at a cheaper price. For example: Buying Christmas trees AFTER Christmas is cheaper than buying it during the Christmas season. They like to jack up the price.

6. CHECK STOCK AVAILABILITY. I've mentioned this before, and it's very important, in case there is an error in transaction, and you end up paying for an item that will never arrive at your doorstep.

7. SHOP AT VALID SITES! There are some really sneaky programs out there that can get your information without you even knowing it. So as a rule, shop at sites that have a "https://" URL. This means that the page is secure and safe for you to enter personal information and order your wares.

8. IT IS SAFER to use credit cards instead of cash or cheques. Simply because if something wrong happens, you can easily stop the transaction by calling up the bank.

With that said, I think we have established a good sense of how to shop safely online.

But what do you think, readers? Is there anything that should be added or taken off this list?

Note: While most tips here are taken from personal experience, the list is composed similar to and based loosely of

Monty Alexander, Tips for Safe Online Shopping, SteetDirectory [Online], Retrieved 2nd June 2009.
URL: http://www.streetdirectory.com/


and

Sortprice.com, 10 Commandments For Safe Online Shopping, Digtriad.com [Online], Retrieved 2nd June 2009.
URL: http ://www.digtriad.com/

Monday, June 1, 2009

Weekly Poll Analysis

Weekly Poll Analysis

The graph above shows the results for the question posted on our weekly poll posted last week. the question of the week was, "Will you prefer to shop online?".

From the total of 11 votes we have received, 5 people making up 45% of the total of our readers have voted "Yes" and 6 people making up 65% of the total voted "No".


From the results, we gather that the number of people who, DO and DO NOT prefer shopping online are very close. None the less, the results show that Internet users still prefer the traditional method of shopping compared to online shopping. One of the reasons would be that they have to tried online shopping or are just not yet used to this new method of shopping.


However, we think that in the near future with the ever growing use of the Internet, more and more people will begin using this method of purchasing items for it is very convenient.


Do you think shopping online will soon gain more popularity?