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5 reasons for shopping online

5 reasons for shopping online

Although buying stuff online hardly surprises anybody today, there are still many people who prefer good old brick-and-mortar stores and believe that nothing beats traditional shopping. Nevertheless, although online shopping certainly has its downsides, we firmly believe these are by far outweighed by its benefits – and are ready to prove it!

1. Online Selection Is Bigger

There is only so much space – even in the biggest brick-and-mortar store. Choice is bound to be limited – retailers that sell hugely varied items often display no more than a fraction of their actual wares, and you sometimes have to inquire about alternative variants – it takes time and is not always effective. Selecting items online may be especially beneficial when you buy something highly customizable, like glasses – if you try to browse a couple thousands of different designs on a show-case, even if one admits that it is physically possible to fit them all in, you are likely to get a headache. While shopping online, you just browse through them at your own pace.

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2. It Is Cheaper

Online retailers don’t have to pay the rent, which is one of the most important contributors to the high prices of their brick-and-mortar counterparts. In addition, it saves the costs of internal shipping, which means that when all is said and done, a large chunk of the item’s added cost is cut away. Moreover, consider other expenses you have to suffer to visit a brick-and-mortar store, namely time and money (e.g., on gas) that can be better used otherwise. And you can never be sure you’ll find what you need on that visit!

3. It Is Easier to Compare Prices

To compare prices in several online stores all you need to do is to spend a few minutes browsing their websites – even if you don’t use one of many price aggregators. If you want to compare several brick-and-mortar stores, you will have to visit them all, and likely spend more money on gas than you are planning to save. Of course, some of them create online price-lists… but isn’t it easier to just skip this step and buy online anyway?

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4. Online Stores Adapt to You

Some people freak out when they notice that online stores remember their previous actions and try to show you the products you are likely to be interested in (and learn from your behavior in a thousand other ways), but in the long run, they do it to make our lives easier in just as great a degree as they do it to sell more. A brick-and-mortar store won’t change its layout to accommodate you; an online one does it every time you visit, although true individualization may be still far away.

5. It Is Easier to Find What You Need

If you want to find something in an online store, you have a flexible search script that will show you everything there is based on any set of variables you need, for you to choose from at your leisure. If you try to find something that isn’t immediately visible in a brick-and-mortar shop, then God help you – because otherwise you will have to rely on a shop assistant who always seems to have been hired yesterday, doesn’t know where anything is and doesn’t seem to be interested in helping you at all.

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All in all, it is no wonder that buying online is getting more and more popular, giving traditional shopping a run for its money – it is certainly a way of the future, and there is no reason to avoid it! Are there any things that you love about online shopping that we’ve missed listing here? Perhaps you’d like to defend traditional, physical shops? Leave a comment below!

Featured photo credit: shopping/ tanka v via flickr.com

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Last Updated on April 3, 2019

How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

Debt is never a fun thing to be in. But, there are many actions that you can take that will help you rid yourself of the burden of debt once and for all.

By coming up with a set plan, eliminating your debt can feel much easier than constantly thinking about it.

This post will provide some tips on how you can do this to help you nix your credit card debt in less than 3 years.

Hint: there are ways that are easier than you think.

1. Consider Consolidating Multiple Credit Cards If Possible

This may not be applicable to you, but if you have multiple cards – it is something to consider. Keeping up with multiple bills is time consuming.

It will depend on the balance you have on each. Consolidate ones you can but do not do it to the point that you get too close to the maximum limit. Also, it is ideal to pick the card with the lower interest rate.

Consider if there are any fees or alternatively, rewards, with transferring a balance to another card. Watch out for fees. Note that some cards offer rewards for transferring a balance to them. This is extra cash that can help go towards paying off your debt.

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Having one or two cards can make nixing your debt much simpler than keeping up with the balance of a bunch of cards. Keeping track of paying the minimum towards a bunch of cards is time consuming. Spend the time to consolidate instead to make the overall process simpler going forward.

My tip: Have one main credit card. Have a second one that you use for necessities – such as groceries or gas – that offers rewards for those purchases (a lot of cards do) and set the second one on auto-pay. You should be able to pay off a smaller amount on auto-pay if it is a necessity. If you think you cannot, then you may need to cut down a lot on expenses.

Why do I suggest doing this? Having one thing set to auto-pay is one less thing to think about. One less thing to waste time on. Same idea with consolidating to one main card. Tracking down too many is a hassle.

2. Try to Pay the Full Balance You Spent Each Month at the Very Least

You need to pay off the amount you are spending each month when that bill comes in. This is the amount you spent THAT month.

Do not let the debt keep accruing while you work on paying any unpaid debt that has accrued. It will become a never-ending battle. Try as best as you can to be current on paying for each month’s expenses when that month’s bill comes out.

If this is a strain, consider why. You may need to cut expenses. Or you may need to consider other cards. Or look at where this money is going.

3. Pay Extra When You Can – Every Small Amount Counts

This cannot be emphasized enough. If you are looking at a lot of credit card debt, it can look daunting, but each extra amount that you can put towards the debt will really add up – no matter how small it is.

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It does not just reduce the principal amount that you have left to pay off, but it reduces the amount that is collecting interest. You will always save money with that reduced interest.

4. Create a Plan on How to Pay Extra

Back to the main point, having this plan is giving you one less thing to think about.

This plan should be a plan that works for you. If it does not work for you, your spending habits, and your views on debt, then it will not be an effective plan.

For instance, if a set plan of an extra $50 (or another amount that you know you can afford) works for you, then do that. Set that aside every month and pay that extra amount. Treat it like a bill. Choose an amount that works for you and pay it like clockwork as though it was a bill you had to pay each month.

Little amounts will not nix it entirely, but they will help tackle it and having a set plan can make it less of a chore. Creating a new plan of how much to put towards it each month is an unnecessary added stress.

5. Cut out Costs for Services You Do Not Use

If you are signed up for subscriptions that you do not use because of some free trial or for some other reason, cut it out. Your overall financial position will look better.

In turn, that will make cutting your credit card debt easier. Look at your statements to find these expenses. If you do not use them, you may forget you are paying some unnecessary amount each month. Cutting it out can really add up in savings that you can put towards other needed expenses.

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6. Get Aggressive About It

Consider these points:

Depending on the interest and the level of debt, you may need to give up a few indulgences. For example, instead of ordering delivery or going out to eat, cook at home. Everything adds up.

Other things may be more of a sacrifice. It may be a trip you wanted to go on, or a daily latte habit you’ve picked up. In these instances, consider how important it is to you and if it’s worth the sacrifice. And if it is a costly expense, think whether you can wait to indulge.

Cutting an extravagant expense can really help make a dent in your overall debt. Try not to add to debt when you are trying to pay it off. It will be a never-ending battle. Make it less of a battle with these tips and it will feel easier.

Bottom line: Do what you can to make this process easier for you. Implement steps that do this. It takes time now, but will help overall. Also, keep track of your spending and paying down of your debts. Which is the next point.

7. Reevaluate Your Progress at Set Intervals

Doing a regular check-in can help you see your efforts pay off or maybe indicate that you need to give this a bit more effort. If you check every 3-6 months, it will not feel so much like a chore or feel so daunting.

By doing this, you will be able to better understand your progress and perhaps readjust your plan. Bonus: if you see it pay off, it will feel great to do this check-in. You will get there.

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Finally (and most importantly)…

8. Keep Trying

Do not get discouraged. Pushing it off will make it worse. Just keep trying.

Once your debt becomes lower, each monthly payment will reduce the balance more. Why? You are paying less towards interest. It will be a snowball effect eventually and it will become much easier to manage. Just get to that point. And know once you do, it will feel easier and motivating.

Start Knocking out Your Debt Today

The best way to eliminate debt is to get started right away. Begin by implementing the above steps and watch your debt just melt away. Try out some of the above strategies and see what works best for you. Soon you’ll be on your way to a debt free life.

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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