Online retailing: open all hours?

Ellis-Chadwick, Fiona (2008). Online retailing: open all hours? International Journal of Business Environment, 2(2) pp. 188–200.



Globally, online retailing has become increasingly important to retailers and consumers. In the UK, the online shopping spend has increased from 0.07% to 7% of the annual retail sales and the consumers' appetite for buying online continues to grow as the internet becomes increasingly accessible, convenient and secure. However, does the internet provide a truly comprehensive shopping experience or are there limitations? A visit to eBay can enable bargain hunters to find almost any product, but many goods are secondhand, which does not suit the needs of all consumers and promps the question of how comprehensive the product ranges offered for sale online by mainstream retailers are. The web is developing into an important shopping environment, but the current flobal internet penetration is under 19% of the world population, suggesting that there are major limitations on who can shop online. On one hand, in certain segments, there is an increasing demand for online shopping but, on the other hand, personal constraints and restrictions in service provision are limiting access to online retailing. This paper focuses on the future of online retailing, the factors which influence consumers' intentions to shop online and the extent of the online shopping services provided by retailers.

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