Online shopping in the Covid world

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El Cid
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Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby El Cid » Tue Jul 14, 2020 6:16 pm

I have read news reports about the huge increase in online shopping during the pandemic. Not just food (which since Mercadona closed their online site until last week) but all the other online options, particularly Amazon, eBay and the like.

What experiences have forum members had with this. Have they increased their online shopping and with which outlets?

I use online shopping for about 99% of purchases apart from food and other locally sourced fresh produce.

I use Amazon a lot as their range of products is absolutely huge. If I want something that is my first port of call. I have used many other online shops for many items including sales direct from China through companies like Ali Express (the Chinese Amazon) and of course eBay. Many Amazon products are shipped direct from China with delivery in only a few days at no postage cost.

Amazon users may not be aware of the fact that your Amazon account is useable at any Amazon site worldwide (subject to postage and customs restrictions). All your delivery addresses and payment details are available. Sometimes it can be very advantageous to use a different country. I ordered an item from Amazon Germany today. It was 35% cheaper than the same item on the Spanish site and for a 3kg item the delivery charge was only €10. Delivery expected within 48 hours.

I have used eBay Spain and eBay UK with the same success and many other Spanish sites for domestic appliances (at huge savings).

So, what are other members experiences of on line shopping? Is this going to be the “New Normal”?

Sid

markwilding
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby markwilding » Tue Jul 14, 2020 6:54 pm

My wife buys loads online then takes it all back or at least that is how it seems to me. You can imagine how much had to be returned at the end of the lockdown.
I did buy the Echo auto from an American shop and the mesh routers because I started to give classes online. However, I think I would have bought them online even if there hadn't been a lockdown, but in general although I like buying stuff, I actually had very low credit card bills during the lockdown and my purchases went down, not up

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firsttango
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby firsttango » Tue Jul 14, 2020 7:06 pm

Similar scenario to you Sid, first port of call is Amazon and have found them excellent especially early on during the lockdown where I had expected delivery times to lengthen but not at all. Items arrived on or before the dates stated.

elusive
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby elusive » Tue Jul 14, 2020 7:44 pm

Only started shopping online when we came here. Amazon maybe a couple of times a year and once or twice clothes from the uk that i had bought previous. No different during lockdown. not the same for others in the street. The courier vans seemed to be here everyday. At least they did well out of everything

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Pamela1 » Tue Jul 14, 2020 7:52 pm

All it does here in the Uk is put more delivery vans on already congested roads. I prefer to see things in person, i don't think any website is a substitute for buying a washing machine or any other electrical goods without first having seen them. The quality in these items keeps changing and it's not easy returning large items.Do people really buy a couch or a bed without having sat or laid on them?As for shoes or clothing, everything tends to look different when it arrives including colour and material, or doesn't fit properly...it's no wonder people are forever queuing outside post offices with parcels...On line shopping has it's trials and errors but i do think it is useful for some items but not for everything. Long live the high street but the way it's going we might be lucky to have one left.Keep using them if you don't want to lose them.

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby gerryh » Tue Jul 14, 2020 7:56 pm

Covid hasn't affected my online shopping.
I have always bought most items via eBay UK, eBay ES, Aliexpress, Banggood or Amazon.
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elusive
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby elusive » Tue Jul 14, 2020 8:08 pm

Agree pamela. Im not a fan of online shopping. I want to go in a shop and feel,look at something. Would never buy electrical items as i always get the friday afternoon one and returns are to much hassle ontop of the worry of it been thrown around before it even gets to me. I bought a northface coat once cause it had a huge online discount but not before i went into a shop and tried it on first! Amazon has been useful while we have been here.never used it before.but thats about it. I had no need for it in the uk as i lived in a large city and i could get what i wanted there

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby El Cid » Tue Jul 14, 2020 8:51 pm

I have bought large white goods online. Fridge freezers, ovens and dishwashers. I have no desire to look at a dishwasher before I buy one. There are loads of online review sites that take them apart and suggest the best buys. The real advantage of online shopping is that if you don’t like it you can send it back for a refund. That is the law and all online companies abide by that. Amazon are particularly good about that. I have returned many items and it is so easy to do and it is the same for all online sellers. You do not need to have an excuse to do so. If you don’t like it, you can send it back at no cost or hassle. You do not normally pay to return items and for bulky items they come and collect and they refund your money very quickly. You would not get the same response if you bought the item in a shop and wanted to return it.
I find it very difficult to justify the time involved trapesing around shops to find what I want. Personal items like clothes are different but even then you can use the try it and send it back if you don’t like it approach. Under the Covid shopping rules you can’t try on items so you end up up with two trips if you don’t like it. With online shopping if you are worried about clothes sizes you can order two sizes and send back the one that doesn’t fit, Sadly, I think the high street shops will never recover from this, but to be fair they should have anticipated it and gone online years ago. Look at John Lewis in the uk and El Corte Inglés in Spain, both have a huge online operation alongside their stores.

Sid

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby markwilding » Tue Jul 14, 2020 9:07 pm

I agree with most of that, I do enjoy going shopping for clothes but I have been buying more and more online especially from El Corte Ingles.
Wife gets many beauty creams and cleaning products from Amazon as well. I buy lots of English learning books from Amazon which usually arrive the next morning sometimes in less than 12 hours after ordering. The one thing I have never tried is online food shopping.
In the end I think it is a balance between the two.

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Pamela1 » Tue Jul 14, 2020 10:33 pm

The economy would fare a lot worse if everything went online, people who go shopping tend to buy many items on impulse, sales would def go down and cafes, restaurants and bars would disappear alongside shops..Many people just wouldn't go out and social life would be almost none existent. Food shopping online? Yes many do it but as much as i hate food shopping i certainly prefer to pick my own tomatoes, fruit etc and because i only go food shopping once a week i chose perishable items with a long enough use by date, i couldn't trust a supermarket to do that. Yes it is a balance between the two however if one had to go id chose the high street hands down. I can resist sitting in a chair and doing everything on the internet.

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby markwilding » Tue Jul 14, 2020 10:50 pm

The problem is that as time goes on more and more people will buy online. This is irreversible so governments should be looking for ways to help high streets adapt. Rents and business rates have do reflect the value of selling from the high street as well as companies like Amazon paying a digital tax.

What I fear is the move to online shopping is going faster than governments can legislate. Covid 19 has bought forward something that is inevitable

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby olive » Tue Jul 14, 2020 11:25 pm

I have certainly seen the effects of online shopping boom in the UK. The streets are chocker for ever longer hours with delivery vans and trucks.

Another thing to factor in the death of the high street is businesses will have surplus office space now they realise their staff can work from home. this plus the death of the high street will be a real problem. I have plenty of ideas to revitalise towns but social distancing plus cash strapped town halls without visionaries means they will just put up business rates and then wonder what went wrong.

The real problem of course is the couch surfers , one eye on Emmerdale and the other on their delivery app. They will just blame other people.

PS good luck getting the global giants to pay their fair dues. That isn't going to happen. Never has since Dewhursts

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Beachcomber » Wed Jul 15, 2020 7:11 am

Apart from Amazon I had never considered online shopping but during the days of total house arrest I needed some dog food and after an abysmal experience with Carrefour I found exactly what I wanted on the Corte Inglés web site.

I found that a 15kg bag from them, delivered to the door by MRW the next day free of charge for orders of over €20, cost the same as a 10kg one from a shop about fifteen kilometers away where I had to go and pick it up.

Sorry that you have lost a customer Mr Small Trader but you only have your government to blame.

markwilding
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby markwilding » Wed Jul 15, 2020 7:25 am

Odd post
You could have visited your local trader or supermarket at any time during the lockdown. In fact Our food shopping trips patterns changed and we made trips to various local supermarket 3-4 times a week instead of once a week and tended to use the little shop for certain fresh vegetables.

Strangely enough, Food sales increased during the lockdown

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spanish_lad
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby spanish_lad » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:41 am

markwilding wrote:
Wed Jul 15, 2020 7:25 am
Odd post
You could have visited your local trader or supermarket at any time during the lockdown
theres nothing local about a 30km round trip :lolno:
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Devils Advocate » Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:57 am

spanish_lad wrote:
Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:41 am


theres nothing local about a 30km round trip :lolno:
Exactly what I was thinking too Lad.
Property owner in Andalucia since 2002. How time flies.

markwilding
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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby markwilding » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:00 am

It's still an odd post. The point is that visits to buy food was permitted. If he didn't go that was his choice.

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Beachcomber » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:29 am

Yes, all will be aware that everything I do or write is odd to this member but I am glad that I am me not him. I wouldn't even give him the time of day (to put it politely) in real life!

It was a lot easier than doing a 30km round trip especially having to explain where I was going on the outward trip with no shopping on board and I could have bought an alternative dog food in my local village so would have been in breach of the rules anyway.

My point that was deliberately ignored was that I was prompted to seek my goods online and found them to be 30% cheaper, even buying from El Corte Inglés, and the local trader has lost a customer as a result.

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Pamela1 » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:36 am

markwilding wrote:
Wed Jul 15, 2020 7:25 am
Odd post
You could have visited your local trader or supermarket at any time during the lockdown. In fact Our food shopping trips patterns changed and we made trips to various local supermarket 3-4 times a week instead of once a week and tended to use the little shop for certain fresh vegetables.

Strangely enough, Food sales increased during the lockdown
Mark nothing strange about food sales being increased during the lockdown, children not in school, people not out at work..

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Re: Online shopping in the Covid world

Postby Free at Last » Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:51 am

I used to like to order clothes online from John Lewis, if I wasn't going to be able to get over to the UK for a while to go shopping, and was happy to pay the 7.50 delivery charge, but when I tried to order something during the lockdown the site would not accept my Spanish address. On checking the website information about deliveries, sure enough it said "we no longer deliver to Spain or Lithuania from our website". No idea why those two countries should have been singled out, nor does it say anything about this being a temporary measure due to the pandemic. It will be a shame if that facility won't be available in the future.


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