We are in the twenty-first century, and almost every kind of business is on the internet. The internet makes everything convenient. If you want to buy something then it’s right there on eBay, Amazon, and any other e-commerce site. This includes the option to buy groceries online.
Because of the ease associated with shopping online without having to leave your house or office, many people have made it their preferred form of visiting the supermarkets. Most supermarket chains allow you to buy your groceries online. There are also websites dedicated to grocery shopping online. But despite all the comfort in online shopping, stuff like groceries should not be bought that way. If there’s one thing you shouldn’t buy online though, it’s food and groceries. Here’s a look at why I don’t buy groceries online and why you shouldn’t either.
You Might not get Quality Products when you Buy Groceries Online
If you buy something online, then you have no guarantee of the quality of the product. An advantage of going to the store yourself is being able to check the quality of food. Even when doing over the counter shopping, buyers are doubtful of where these consumables have been even they look okay. From the screen, there is no way to tell if a product like chicken eggs or cheese is still palatable. I personally prefer buying fresh from the farmers, not even from grocery stores, much less going online! Not to mention the risk of the product being damaged during the delivery process.
Freshness Of Produce
Since you buy groceries online, you are just seeing virtual products unlike when you are right there in the market to pick out the state or freshness. The only way to be sure that your groceries are fresh is to go to the supermarket, feel, smell, and buy them yourself. You don’t know if someone at the store just grabbed whatever they could and put it in your bag. There’s also no telling what the expiration date on a product is until you get it. You could find that the online supermarket sent you something that expires that same day. Some services are now guaranteeing freshness, such as Amazon Fresh; which promises organic and fresh products for online grocery shoppers.
The storage of food, especially during transportation is another concern when buying groceries online. Particularly when it comes to frozen and perishable foods. Some items like milk, cheese, fresh sausages, veggies have to stay in refrigerate temperatures during transportation. There are some things you want to buy and store as quickly as you can. You can’t do that with online grocery shopping.
You Might Get Products You Didn’t Ask For when you Buy Groceries Online
One of the dangers of buying groceries online is receiving something that looks totally different from the picture. Online grocery shopping is no exception. Another problem with grocery shopping online is that sometimes the retailer will include an item that is similar to what you asked for rather than the actual product. When you order for something that is not available, the e-shops tend to take it upon themselves to give you a substitute for that unavailable grocery. An example is receiving sweet potatoes when you ordered Irish potatoes instead. It’s a common problem people have had with online shopping for years now.
Potential for Cross-Contamination
If you live gluten-free, or a vegan/vegetarian, or don’t eat pork, then you want to do all your own shopping. It’s the only way to guarantee that you get the right products for you and avoid the risk of cross-contamination. Companies will pack several deliveries into a single truck or van to make things more convenient, but this increases the risk that your food will come into contact it shouldn’t.
You Might be Paying More when you Buy Groceries Online
When you shop online you pay the highest possible price for what you’re after. If you go to the store yourself you may be able to find what you’re looking for (or a similar product) on offer. You might be missing out on a sale or some other deal.
The grocery store nearby has the same products as the ones online, so why should you pay more for the same item or one which has less quality than the one you pick yourself? You may have discount coupons, but you cannot use them via online shopping. Also when you buy groceries online, you just pay the price you see without bargaining with the sellers. It is not easy to get a refund when you shop online.
Shopping for groceries online also comes with delivery fees. Some produce needs next day delivery, and you have to pay the delivery charge. These delivery charges quickly add up as well. It simply does not seem economical to pay delivery fees. Moreover, most of these delivery deadlines aren’t met. This can shake your schedule and add hidden costs.
Some banks will charge you for each transaction you do with your card, offline. However, you cannot pay cash when you buy groceries online. Also offline what you see is what you get, and you can always return it. Buy groceries online and if you don’t like it, it is a waste or you will have to pay extra for shipping return. Keep in mind shipping food is not shipping a letter!
Some groceries may be displayed on the website, but are not available for sale. This is usually because the web managers didn’t remember to update the site. Your choice is also limited to only what is displayed online. In addition, you can’t compare produces hand to hand.
While it is harder to follow a budget when shopping online, shoppers also worry about payment security. Online fraud is on the rise, and your payment details can be used against you or you may be browsing a fake website.
Adverts on the website can also be disturbing and take away from the shopping experience. Not to mention that if anything happens to your network reception, your shopping is over.
Shopping for groceries online is not a good idea overall. Not only does this practice makes you lazy (you need to stop depending on the internet for everything, get out there and do some exercise to the grocery store), but also when stores around you get fresh goods, and you choose online stores over them, you make their groceries rot.
While shopping for groceries online can be convenient, there are several things you have to give up for this convenience. Even if Walmart Grocery offers the option of in-store pickup. The only way to ensure you get the fresh products you want at a good price is to go to the store yourself.