Friday, December 19, 2008

A good news for online retailers, but one more little thing

ReadWriteWeb has reported today that although economy is slow, online sales are going strong. This news somehow supports my prediction that the golden time of World Wide Web is coming. When more and more people have to stay at home because of the economic downturn, they are on the Web.

At the same time, now people are trying to buy cheaper stuff. The Web allows us to compare the price of a product in different retailers so that we may easily get the best deal. And we do not need to drive to the local stores, which again saves a few bucks.

There is, however, one more little thing that is worth of considering by the retailers: try their best to remove the shipping and handling fee. Amazon has done it quite well. With a moderate line of purchase, the Amazon customers get free shipping and handling. Believe it or not, this little thing may somehow be a determining factor, especially in this economic hard time. One dollar higher in price might be accepted by a little bit superior in quality (either on the product or on its service). One dollar on shipping and handling is, however, nothing but an overhead.

The coming of the golden time does not mean that we can now be careless on running the online services. On the contrary, now the online retailers must be more careful in details than ever because they might never get a better chance to enlarge the base of their customers, if they could not do well in this period of time.

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