Saturday, 18 June 2016

Online Shopping at 576104 (Manipal)


The year 2007 was a game changer for online shopping in India. Flipkart had good discounts and attractive offers up it's sleeve and succeeded in reeling-in consumers to get on board with online shopping. However the foundation for online shopping was set much earlier. The first encounter of most of the Indian population with E-commerce was way back in 2002 when the government introduced train booking through IRCTC. Following this flight tickets, hotel booking, tours and travel packages were also introduced. Following the success of Flipkart, many other online stores have come into the market of online shopping like Amazon.in, Jabong, Myntra and so many more which sell make up (I might not know how to contour my face but when I see make up... *drools*). Today, E-commerce has expanded to every nook and cranny of  the country. That's where the Pin code 576104- Manipal comes in.

The power of the internet is the driving force behind online shopping.The catalyst for boom in online shopping is the fact that smartphones and internet services have become affordable A few years ago Dar-es-salaam (my hometown) had not heard of online shopping so when I came to India as a college fresher I could safely say I was 'mshamba' (Swahili word that translates to a person who does not know something). After getting my own State Bank of India bank account as part of the enrollment process I learned to handle my own finances (only the spending, not the earning!). It took six rounds to the bank and a barge-in entry to the manager's office to get my Online Banking activated. I am still not sure about the difference between Net Banking and Online Banking. All I know is I can pay for things online after receiving a One Time Password on my mobile number.

It has been two and half years since that day and I have not looked back when it comes to using my 'power' (as I like to think of it). I have been able to manage everything through a click of a button. To this day I am amazed with how easily an order is placed, the ability to track it's location, get regular updates and to choose the option of paying online or through Cash On Delivery (COD).

The students at Manipal like to shop (including myself). I did not realize how big online shopping was in Manipal until about a month ago when I moved to a different, a bigger hostel. Everyday at lunch time (when the students are free), around a dozen men on motorbikes come and wait outside the hostels. If you are expecting a delivery that day, you get a call asking you to come down and collect your parcel. Sometimes I wonder if they judge us but then I see my new, shiny delivery and forget it all. I would like to justify at this point that Manipal is located in the middle of nowhere and the shopping options especially for clothing are limited in the small town. I recall my first birthday in Manipal when I had to pick my birthday outfit and I only had two choices in my size! Luckily one of them turned out to be the perfect addition to my collection but the other was  a mustard colored dress which I swear I could not have pulled off. 

With the 'power' of online shopping I get to buy clothes, many times at great discounts too, in my size and in the color of my choice. The free return and exchange policies make the process so much simpler that it's just impossible to resist (especially when the brilliant computer knows what you want and keeps those advertisement tabs on every page you visit). Shopping once in a while is healthy (but you must browse! After all you have to be aware of the Sale, duh).

Online Shopping : The Pros and Cons List.

Pros                                                                                                                             
-Easily accessible.
-Large variety of options.
-Easy means of payment.
-Efficient Delivery system.
-Discounts!

Cons
-Spending and Shopping more than necessary.
-Mistake in order (size, colour etc).
-Time (It does take a few days if you don't like in a Metropolitan city).
-In-genuine products.

If done wisely, online shopping can be your key to staying in trend and saving a few bucks through those discounts.

Thank you for reading.
Hope you enjoyed reading this blog post and can relate to my story.

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