In spite of the uproar and several perks of online shopping in the Philippines, many are still wary of it due to data privacy, usability, and other legal issues.
Online Shopping & Data Protection
Online shopping in the Philippines is still quite tricky especially since a lot of shoppers prefer “mano-mano” (filling out sort of a questionnaire for their details instead of an order form or adding products to a shopping cart) style when ordering. This is because a lot of people, whatever the age, are technologically-challenged. Many of them would even prefer to order via Facebook messenger instead of ordering from websites.
However, regardless of ordering the “mano-mano” way or via the shopping cart, many Filipinos also aren’t aware of the dangers of just giving their information online. We easily trust, especially if we see a lucrative deal online. Many don’t know how to discern an online shop if it’s legitimate or not.
Safety and Reliability Issues when shopping online
I have a friend who found an online store selling cheap gadgets. This online store was on WordPress and has a Facebook account. I already told her that this store isn’t legitimate, but she still bought the mobile phone since it was half as much as its price in malls. She ended up being scammed. Another friend of mine purchased from a rather reputable online store, but it wasn’t until that store was banned by authorities because of selling smuggled items.
Many are fond of buying cheap stuff especially since we’re living in a third world country. I too am guilty of that. I won’t mind if the product I’m buying is smuggled, as long as I get it for cheap. There seems no harm in this, but the thing is, it will be hard in the future especially if the shop where you’re buying from gets caught by authorities. It would be such a hassle.
Shopping online VS. Shopping in malls
Many people prefer shopping online, not just introverts. According to my Myers-Briggs, I’m an extrovert (although there’s a lot of flaws in that personality test), but shopping with salespeople around can really be annoying, especially if you’re not ready to splurge money. This also applies to other stuff, not just gadgets. Hence, I prefer making my canvass online instead of visiting gadget stores in malls.
The current market for Android phones is already saturated with many brands that are worth every penny. I currently use a Huawei P9, the first phone with the Leica camera. Huawei wasn’t super big during that time, but it took a lot of research for me to finally decide that the phone was worth buying.
It’s a great thing that there are a lot of tech blogs and vlogs to help us decide which gadgets to buy. These tech bloggers are better off helping you because a lot of them feature different gadgets and review them objectively, unlike if you visit a gadget store where the salespeople have biases.
Online Shopping in the Midst of a Pandemic
Online shopping has never been more useful than in the current state of pandemic. It’s a lot safer, and even cheaper, given that there’s no need for people to buy snacks in the middle of shopping. However, there are a lot of issues that people should consider. Fake discounts, shipping schedule, product availability, and order processing are some of those. Read my 9 Tips for an Easier and Wiser Online Shopping. For the online shopping noobs out there, you may read my Checklist on How to Discern which Online Shops are Trustworthy.
The copyright-free images used in this blog post are from Unsplash.