One hundred and thirty-three

The inconvenience of online shopping  

My back bike light broke.  The one that is red and flashing and keeps me visible to cars when it’s dark out.  The light that I legally must have and personally like to have as it makes me feel safe.  The light that is easily purchased at Mountain Equipment Co-op.  In any normal circumstance, I would go buy another one and would have it right away.  This month is a different story.  I bought two on eBay (I will talk more about eBay tomorrow) to see which one I get first – and it’s always good to have a back-up.  They were super cheap, too. But now I’m in a bind.  Do I stop riding my bike at night?  Do I ride without a light?  Or do I try to rig the light so it works (the light part still works, it just keeps falling apart and won’t attach to my bike anymore)?

2009 online shopping statistics from Statistics Canada:

  • Canadians used the Internet in 2009 to place orders for goods and services valued at $15.1 billion, up from $12.8 billion in 2007.
  • About 39% of Canadians aged 16 and over used the Internet to place more than 95 million orders.
  • About one-half (51%) of Canadians aged 16 to 34 purchased a product online in 2009. Men (42%) were more likely than women (37%) to have made an online purchase.
  • The top online shoppers (that is, the top 25%) spent an average of $4,210.
  • The most common types of online orders continued to be travel services; entertainment products such as concert tickets; books and magazines; and clothing, jewellery and accessories.
  • In 2009, 52% of Canadians went online to “window shop,” that is, to research or browse products, up from 43% in 2007.  Among all window shoppers in 2009, 69% reported subsequently making a purchase directly from a store, up from 64% in 2007.
  • More than one-half (55%) of users with five or more years of online experience made an online order in 2009 compared with 23% of those online for less than five years.
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