I remember the time when someone mentions online shopping, the comments would be; ‘is it safe?’ ‘Will the seller actually send me the item?’ ‘Why don’t you just go to the store and get it?’ Now we have no problems with inputting our credit card details in the checkout page, we would be terribly surprised(and annoyed) if the item does not reach us, and we no longer compare online shopping to ‘brick and mortar’ shopping(I reckon online shopping to be the 3D of shopping). So today, I am going to share my experience with you, my dear GDS reader, on where I shop online. The good, the bad and the just plain irresistible.
Ebay. The online marketplace to rule them all. Or is it? Ebay is what launched the madness of buying and selling online. I am a big Ebay user and have bought plenty from Ebay sellers. It used to be the first place I go to to satisfy a buying itch. With items that start from 0.99USD, it is easy to get lost in the millions of listings they have. I used past tense because now Ebay seems really sterile. It used to hold a circus like unpredictability, you never know what you will find, and like I mentioned you do not even have to have a item in mind to shop. Now, Ebay with its big brother arms stretching over the sellers for its desire to have control, it has lost that wonder. But it still has a large database of products that I go to simply to get a feel of a fair price of an item.
Gmarket. This marketplace has succeeded locally where Ebay has failed. It is no wonder that Ebay has bought over the Korean phenomena. The big thing about buying from Gmarket.sg is dealing with SGD and the shipping charges, if there were any, actually makes sense! There isn’t a need to convert currency, what you see is usually the Full Landing Price. Although its database of listings is not yet anywhere near Ebay’s, it is now large enough to spend quite a bit of time in the site. It is especially great for ladies because of the huge range of fashion items. This brings up a point; Blogshops. I have not done any study on it, but I will put my dollar on Gmarket having the same dress at cheaper price. In fact, Gmarket probably has a wider range of korean fashion items.(its sellers being Korean and Chinese). So, is Gmarket going to be taking over Ebay as king of online marketplaces? I doubt it, the way I see it, it would probably be carving itself a unique piece of the pie.
This retail giant has gone from strength to strength offering almost anything that can be shipped. From books to cameras to shoes and socks. It probably is the world’s benchmark for pricing. The big problem for us in tiny Singapore is shipping. We always have to keep in mind that the price we are looking at excludes shipping. And we are even more frustrated when the listing claims ‘item ships for free with Super Saver Shipping’ and realize that it only valid for U.S. addresses. Especially with their flagship product Kindle and the new Kindle fire, Amazon does not allow purchases with shipping addresses to Singapore. Yes, I know, frustrating. But this brings me to the next place where I do my online shopping.
Tarazz.com is a portal for shopping sites, its partners include Amazon.com, Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s among others. Its service is, in more ways than one, simple. At the home page, chose the site you want to shop at and, well, shop. They will take care of the rest.(you have to register of cos) No more out of this world shipping prices and guessing the final SGD price and worrying about shipping. Their customer service tracks the item the moment the item is bought till it reaches your doorstep.
I first came into contact with Tarazz.com about 2 years back when they had a promotion with DBS cards and that is when I bought my first item from Tarazz.com. It was a fairly high priced item, a Garmin Forerunner. So naturally I was a little bit nervous about the purchase. It was a service I had never used before and I did not know what to expect. I called them up after 3 days to bug them about my purchase, I know, in retrospect I was a little unreasonable. Short story, their customer service was more that capable to deal with customers like myself and the item reached me in good time. I strongly recommend Tarazz.com to you if you are already wanting to purchase something off the shopping sites that they partner with, and with Amazon.com as one of their partners, Tarazz.com should be one of your first choices. Did I mention you can purchase any of the Kindles including the Kindle Fire with Tarazz.com also without any hassle?
The people at GDS loves books, and we simply adore The Book Depository. We love the free shipping worldwide, we love the massive amount of titles they have and we love that they show their price also in SGD. With Borders Singapore on the verge of blinking out of existence, we have come to embrace this marvelous site even more. We have written about The Book Depository in an earlier article. Do check it out to find out why it is so great!
This is a UK based online fashion site with everything you need for the fashionista in you. With the local fashion trends following the likes of Top Shop, Top man and H&M, Asos.com fits right in. It also stocks brands like G-star raw, River Island, Fred Perry, Ted baker and Ben Sherman just to name a few. But what I really like is its own Asos house brand, great quality, and the price is more than reasonable. The best thing is, they are always having a sale, so you don’t have to wait long for an excuse to shop there. Oh, did I mention? Free shipping worldwide, even if you only purchase one item!
This photo and video mega-store is the first place I go to find information about any photography product. Its inventory is second to none. But purchasing on B&H is not entirely straightforward. First of all, you have to do a currency conversion. Then you have to make price comparisons with the local prices. Remember to include shipping. But sometimes it really is worth your time and effort cos you can save even a good 10%(for photography products that can be quite a lot). If you are a photography buff this is a site that would be bookmarked.
So, dear readers, this is where I shop online for(almost) anything. Do share with us your experience of shopping online. What is your most visited site for shopping? Do you even shop online?