Buying Gifts from Online Stores – It is Better Than Street Shopping?

Gift shopping is an activity that we all have to do at some point during the year, whether it’s something we do once or more than once. We all have birthdays, attend weddings, celebrate anniversaries and for most of us, celebrate Christmas. Buying and giving presents seems to part of our international culture- to mark, congratulate and celebrate important events through the year. Why shouldn’t we celebrate the birth of our child, the day we married our spouse and so on and so forth? I don’t think the question is why we buy gifts, but how do we find that special gift? In this article I will try and discuss the two main sources we have for gift shopping- high street or online shopping and their pros and cons.

gift-buyingGift shopping is an activity that we all have to do at some point during the year, whether it’s something we do once or more than once. We all have birthdays, attend weddings, celebrate anniversaries and for most of us, celebrate Christmas. Buying and giving presents seems to part of our international culture- to mark, congratulate and celebrate important events through the year. Why shouldn’t we celebrate the birth of our child, the day we married our spouse and so on and so forth?

I don’t think the question is why we buy gifts, but how do we find that special gift? In this article I will try and discuss the two main sources we have for gift shopping- high street or online shopping and their pros and cons.

I think both serve their purposes but not without their own cons. High street shopping can be an enjoyable way to look for your gift. Not only can you touch and feel the item, but it’s an activity that can be enjoyed with others. However from personal experience, looking for a gift on the high street can be a bit of a chore, especially if you do not know what you are specifically looking for. A whole day can be spent roaming the high street for that one gift, and on a cold rainy day, this is not a pleasant experience. Furthermore, how many occasions have there been when instead you start trying on clothes and shoes for yourself. It probably sounds familiar right? It is probably true that for many, gift shopping on the high street can put a further dent in your pocket and distract you away from your real task.

In a time precious, fast moving world that we live in, and with our ongoing hunger for convenience, online shopping has dramatically increased over the years. Here, I would like to discuss my thoughts on buying gifts online. In contrast to high street shopping, buying gifts online, I would say can be the convenient way to shop- many may call it the lazy way. I would say the word lazy is a little harsh. However notice how I have preferred to say CAN and not IS. I say this because, again, if you do not know what you are looking for, hours can be spent surfing the internet. The world wide web serves as one massive place where, not hundreds of shops can be found but tens of thousands. How do we select the good from the bad without having to spend hours on the internet? Perhaps for now you just want to get some inspiration and gifts ideas, and will decide on your purchase at a later stage?

It is true to say that although there are a huge amount of shops on the internet (far more than you would find on the high street), they all have varying quality in terms of what they offer and how they offer it to you. Therefore, be selective in the sites that you chose to spend your precious time browsing through. If your purpose is to look for a present, look through sites that you feel have been designed to serve this purpose. You may be wanting a gift wrap service because you need the gift to be sent straight to the receiver. Maybe you are looking for a gift for an elderly person? If so, it will make your life easier to look at shops that categorise gifts in this age group, rather than having to look through products that are only suitable for the younger generation. If you do not know what you are looking for, another important feature of an online gift shop is a well designed, user-friendly site with good navigation tools to help you find the ideal gift. One tool that is particularly useful when trying to find a gift is a gift finder. This tool allows you to narrow your search to find gifts that is suitable for your recipient. Most gift finder tools will match gender, personality and interests. One can usually gage from the homepage the quality of the site and what it has to offer.

All online shops will claim to offer unrivalled customer service, but only your own personal experience will tell you this. Of course if you don’t have any, spend a little time reading testimonials and reviews. It’s true that often only the good reviews are posted on the site, so finding unbiased website reviews can help. For a first time shopper on a new shop, trusting your initial instincts can also go a long way.