Introduction to online shopping
Since surfing the internet became a common activity, it has transformed the behavior of many people. Originally, the development of the internet was to create an avenue to facilitate the dissemination of information. However, it has undergone a significant transformation to become a crucial tool in different areas. The retail sector represents one of the areas that have been influenced by the transformation of internet use. The outcome of this impact has been the emergence of e-commerce, whereby retailers sell their products and amenities online. Similarly, consumers can now purchase different goods and services that are sold on these digital outlets. It is assumed that e-commerce will continue growing because of the rising number of internet users. This aspect will translate into new business prospects for retailers. This aspect explains why customer-focused electronic commerce is becoming a global phenomenon.
How online shopping is effective for the customer
Some of the factors that have supported the growth of e-commerce include:
The fact that online businesses afford consumers convenient shopping.
The second benefit consumers enjoy as a result of e-commerce is the fact that they have access to a wide variety of fashion accessories, kids’ clothes, grooming, hair care, as well as health and beauty products from reputable international brands. For instance, Banglashoppers.com, which is one of the largest e-commerce stores in Bangladesh, retails luxury cosmetics from international brands such as Lancôme and Chanel. Some of the makeup products that customers can purchase from this store include foundations and mascara. Additionally, customers can buy nail polish, perfumes, and colognes from local brands as well as international ones.
The third benefit of e-commerce to consumers is connected to the issue of accessibility and price comparisons. For the modern consumer, comparing the cost of desired products from different retailers is crucial to a purchasing decision. As such, it is easier to compare prices online compared to walking from one brick-and-mortar store to the next. Most consumers have also indicated that buying goods and services online is an enjoyable experience compared to visiting a physical outlet where they feel a sensory overload or disturbance from relentless sales executives pitching different items to them.
The electronic commerce industry has experienced exponential growth in recent years compared to the early 2000s when Bangladesh lacked expansive internet coverage or a dependable digital transaction framework. In 2009, the country’s financial regulator, the Bangladesh Bank, started allowing online transactions. Four years later, this institution ratified the procurement of both commodities and services online using global credit cards. Data obtained from the International Telecommunication Union indicates that the number of internet users in the country has grown three-fold from a proportion of 6.5% of the Bangladesh population in 2013 to 18.2% in 2016. Although only 2% percent of Bangladesh residents have a fixed broadband connection, 17.8% of the country’s population has access to a mobile broadband subscription. The E-commerce Association of Bangladesh projects that over 700 online businesses exist in the country currently. On the other hand, over 8,000 e-commerce Facebook pages have been identified. This body highlighted the fact that most of these enterprises are concentrated in sectors such as fashion accessories, makeup, hair care, perfume, and grooming shops, kids and baby stores, bath and body outlets, as well as health and beauty businesses.
Prons and Cons
E-commerce is a new phenomenon. However, it confers customers with several advantages. Consumers of health and beauty, fashion, grooming, hair care, and kids’ products in Bangladesh highlight convenience, improved selection, information, and price as the main pros associated with shopping online.
In contrast, the shortcomings of online shopping in Bangladesh include underdeveloped delivery mechanisms, lack of strong privacy policies, the prevalence of cyber fraud, and the lack of hands-on inspection of desired goods or services.
E-commerce offers a big platform on which fashion, beauty, kids’, hair care, grooming, as well as perfume shops can present their products and services to a large customer base. The beauty industry in Bangladesh is drawing significant benefits following its integration of e-commerce into its business model. On the other hand, consumers have enjoyed notable gains in terms of easily accessible commodities and services, improved brand varieties, and reduced prices. E-commerce is likely to continue growing as more people are gaining access to internet connectivity in Bangladesh. Therefore, it is important for e-commerce enterprises to develop their capacity to handle the customer demands that will emerge as this sector experiences growth.