The convenience of online shopping has been talked about many times by the same people who believe wholeheartedly in the power of technology to revolutionize the way consumers interact with businesses. It was a surely a game-changer when it was introduced, but a lot of buyers today are probably oblivious of the developments that the whole industry had to go through to achieve what it promised to people in the first place. Other than the convenience already mentioned earlier, the product variety seems to be an important motivational factor for consumers.
In 1994, the purchase of an audio CD album by the band Sting was historically tagged as the first online retail transaction on the Internet. That was only a few years after Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web. But before the subsequent technological innovations of online shopping, Michael Aldrich had already developed a system of participative communication with end-users using videotext technology in the 1980s. The whole idea makes possible efficient electronic transactions in real time. The issue of privacy would, of course, be resolved a more than a decade after.
The physicality of brick-and-mortar businesses was challenged by the emergence of online shopping which, at the onset, offered a cheaper, more convenient, and highly tailored and personalized purchasing experience compared to other retailing channels. In the beginning, there was a lot of queries and concerns about the new method of purchasing products. The whole process seemed implausible, and there were a lot of concepts that needed clarification and explanation, given that computer technologies and their interaction with the Internet were relatively new around that time.
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