Online shopping hit all-time highs during last year’s lockdowns and continues to grow at a rapid pace. Not only is online shopping convenient and affordable, but it also can be a lot of fun. Shoppers can browse through hundreds of product options, read reviews from other customers, and arrange for delivery from the comfort of home. What’s not to like?
Before you take your next shopping cart to the checkout page, check out these items you might not previously have considered buying online. You might be surprised to see how traditional buying experiences are being retooled for speed, convenience, privacy, and low cost.
1. Birth Control
How nice would it be to buy your prescriptions online instead of having to go to the pharmacy every time you need a refill? You wouldn’t even have to pick it up. Buying your prescriptions online means you’ll receive them in the mail with a minimum of hassle.
Thanks, in part, to the growth of the telehealth industry, it’s now possible in most states to get birth control online. In addition to their contraceptive function, birth control medications can help control migraines, clear acne, and moderate menstrual cycles. Taking birth control regularly, without interruption, is the key to achieving good results. Having your supply ordered online makes for a timely transition from dose to dose.
2. Used Cars
Self-driving cars are still a work in progress, but getting a more conventional used car delivered right to your house is a present reality. Online car shopping has become a surprisingly reliable way to get yourself a new-to-you ride. No more pressure from car salesmen and faster approval processes make online car shopping one of the easiest dealership experiences you’ll ever have.
Today, companies such as Carvana and CarMax will deliver one of their used cars to your home for a test drive. If you’re not happy with the vehicle, you can send it back. If you’re sold, just complete the proper forms online and finalize your purchase. The process is not only quick and efficient, it’s perfectly safe and a secure way to buy or sell a vehicle.
3. Replacement Mattresses
Transporting a new mattress home is next to impossible if you don’t have the proper vehicle. Fortunately, that’s no longer a concern. Top mattress companies are shaking up the industry by delivering mattresses directly to their customers. Delivery service gives companies a competitive advantage and allows more customers to make purchases even if they drive a Prius.
The average mattress needs to be swapped out every six to eight years. You can replace yours sooner if you’re having trouble sleeping or otherwise feel uncomfortable when trying to get to sleep. When you need a replacement, add it to your shopping cart from one of the many vendors that sell online and arrange for deliveries.
Testing out a mattress before finalizing a purchase is always a good idea. That way, you’ll be able to tell whether it promotes better sleep and prevents morning aches and pains. Check to see which brands allow for a free trial period after delivering their mattresses; many direct-to-consumer mattress companies do.
4. Pet Supplies
Speaking of heavy objects that are difficult to transport, a single bag of dog food can weigh in excess of 40 pounds. Hauling a few of those bags from your car to the house every few weeks can be quite a hassle. That’s especially true for older individuals or those who struggle with chronic pain or injuries. If you need pet food on a regular basis, search for a good price and add it to your online shopping list.
Not only is it more convenient to shop for pet food online, but it offers other perks. Sign up for subscriptions with your online vendor of choice, and you’ll get your pet supplies sent to you regularly. Sometimes these packages arrive with special treats for your pets, fun freebies that make the discounted pricing and home delivery no-brainers.
Consumers browse for electronics on the internet more than any other product category on the market. Maybe you have a new phone or tablet on your wishlist right now. In addition to the convenience of ordering your electronics online, the prices typically can’t be beaten.
From 2014 to 2019, Adobe tracked the prices of a variety of goods to see how prices fluctuated over time. They compared the cost of appliances, groceries, and electronics purchased online to the Labor Department’s price index for the same products bought at brick-and-mortar locations. The price drops for computers and televisions were greater online than they were in physical stores. To take advantage of lower prices and online-only special incentives, consider shopping for your next electronic device online.
Avid readers agree that there’s something about holding a physical copy of a book that can’t be replicated. That new book smell, the feel of the pages turning, and the lack of blue light emitting from a screen are all good selling points. As appealing as hardback and paper-bound classics are, though, e-books have their perks as well and are worth a try.
For starters, there is weight and bulk — or rather, an e-book’s lack of both. This makes traveling with a book so much easier, as it’s always easily accessible on any device you own. You don’t have to purchase an e-reader to enjoy a digital book, though some readers swear by the enhanced experience various models offer.
The price of e-books is also competitive. You can often get an e-book for significantly less than you would a physical book at a bookstore. This is especially true for notoriously expensive textbooks. Students can often save hundreds of dollars by getting the same textbook online instead of buying the 20-pound physical version.
Are you itching to do some more online shopping yet? It’s easy enough to get carried away, so it might be a good idea to double-check your budget and set limits. As you consider these newer product categories, ask yourself which are merely novel and which represent a serious leveling-up for your family’s shopping needs.