Do you like shopping? I hope you do. But even if you are the one who isn’t very enthusiastic to go shopping, I am sure you are very familiar with online shopping. Whether you are a man or a woman, at least once in a while, you are tempted to look some photos that online shops upload on their pages.
Online shopping has many advantages. Obviously, it saves time for transportation since the traffic takes hours nowadays. More importantly, we don’t have to put up with eager or sullen salesperson following us in the shop like we need assistance every other minute. With online shops, we can conveniently look up thousands of choices and designs with scrolls and clicks on our phone or laptop. However, shopping online, in other words, ordering something just by looking at photos is too risky. I am sure everybody comes across to memes showing how different the products look from photos the sellers provide and their actual conditions. It may seem hilarious at first but if you think deeply, shopping online is like a gamble. Personally, I don’t really enjoy going shopping at the malls, especially in this hot weather and bad traffic. So, I prefer online shopping because we can get everything we need online starting from latest trend of clothing to food.
Though I don’t shop online too many times, I believe I have enough shopping experiences to grumble. Firstly, I feel the need to complain about some bad customer service. Since I once have been an online shop owner, I do understand how people can be really bad or rude but sometimes, shop owners just ignore customer’s messages or they don’t even care to reply. When one of my orders was lost, I called the owner for inquiry. She reasoned that delivery company seemed to lose it but she had already received compensation from the company. However, she never cared about her customer and didn’t take responsibility. She didn’t even inform me about this and I had waited for more than one month. She could have been more responsible and explain the situation to me. I could be very understanding but she did not reach out to me. So consequently, she lost me, her customer. I never buy anything from her again. Since online shops have emerged in our society, customer service has been the most delicate and important experience for both survivals of these shops and satisfaction of its customers but shop owners and sellers do not seem to realize it.
Though the number of online shops on Facebook is uncountable, the ones which are reliable are still limited, especially when we order branded stuffs online. If you ever want to order branded things like MK, Fossil, Coach, LV, you have to be extra careful because you are going to spend a certain amount of money on something you do not get to see in real life. Before placing an order, you should ask around about the sellers and read customer reviews to find the most reliable seller. When Facebook pages are the most widely used platform for Myanmar online shops, one has to put a lot of effort to make sure that our money isn’t wasted. At the end of the day, there isn’t any law that protects the customers if anything happens with our online purchases.
As I mentioned above, we can get everything online now. When I want to order birthday cake for my friend, I don’t have to go out personally and have to face the scorching weather. All I need to do is search bakeries online and I get access to sample photos of cake designs. I can even compare the price and qualities of cakes from different shops just by reading their customer reviews. It is kind of more enticing than going out in person. We can all agree that shopping online saves time, energy and transportation fee.
On the other hand, it is a gamble work to order online in terms of quality of the products and sizes but the convenience of shopping online makes our lives a lot easier so I guess we will never give up on online shops. So all we can do is to hope that local online shops become more reliable and provide good and satisfying services to customers. Even the street vendors sell things so how will these online shop add values when their customer service is poor? Selling things is much more than creating a Facebook page, posting product photos, collecting orders, then getting delivered these orders. Keeping loyal customers is as important as the profit.
When our online payment systems and shipping systems are developed and ordering from websites like Amazon become more convenient, these little shops on Facebook will be in danger. As for now, we don’t know when this is going to happen but when it happens, it’s up to them to worry about, not us customers.
Right now, our only concern is whether we will spend time at the malls, enduring all the sales girls or just order online and hope that the product we order is exactly the same as we see on screen. What will you do?
Myat Thet Khine