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Am I a Savvy Online Shopper?

May 25, 2012

I’ve been inspired by Kate on Thin Ice to reflect on whether I am a Savvy Online Shopper. Here are Kate’s questions, together with my answers.

1. How often do you shop online?

Not as often as I used to. After taking a break from online shopping for two months last autumn I managed to cut my credit card bill and ever since then I’ve been much more thoughtful about how much money I spend online. This means I now do most of my shopping in ‘bricks and mortar’ shops but I still shop online a few times a month.

2. If you can remember, tell us about the first time you shopped online?

The first thing I bought online was a book called Windows CE 2 for Dummies from the original website back in 1997. This book wasn’t available in the UK so I decided to order it from the states using the newfangled online book shop.  Then I became one of the first customers of, which certainly saved money on postage!

3. What do you buy regularly online?

Kindle books – which can only be bought online of course!

4. What other type of products or services do you buy online? (flowers, gifts, holidays, insurance etc)

  • Holidays, including travel and accommodation, are almost always booked online these days
  • Gifts are good to buy online, especially if you want to personalise them
  • Cross stitch kits and materials – the selection available online is better than any physical shop could offer
  • Large items for delivery – e.g. this week I ordered a new washing machine from John Lewis
  • I do all my banking online

5. What are the advantages of shopping online?

  • the ability to search for exactly what I am looking for
  • broader range of items available
  • price is often cheaper, especially if I shop around and use discount codes
  • buying gifts online can save time and effort on postage compared to buying, wrapping and posting something myself

6. Are there any disadvantages of shopping online?

Yes – it is too easy to spend too much money! It only takes a few clicks to place an order. And there are so many special offers and discount codes available to use when shopping online that it’s hard to resist the idea that I’m ‘saving’ money when actually I’m spending it. And sometimes I end up buying additional items to qualify for free postage!

Also, some items look better onscreen than they do when they arrive in a parcel a few days later, and it’s a lot of hassle to send them back so sometimes I don’t get round to it, especially if the item only cost a few quid.

And I tend not to buy clothes or shoes online as I prefer to have chance to try things on before purchase. One way round this is to use a ‘deliver to local store’ option as this way I can try items on and hand them straight back if I don’t like the fit.

7. Do you ever shop online in secret?

Nowadays I tend to consult with my husband before making large purchases. It’s a good way of double-checking whether I’m spending our money wisely.

8. What is the very last thing you bought online?

A father’s day present for my dad.

9. If someone was buying something online for you, what would you like it to be if money was no object?

If money was no object, I would like someone to buy me a holiday! I’d really love to go to The Valley in Cornwall again.

10. Have you heard of Give As You Live?

Yes I think Give As You Live is a really great idea and I’ve signed up to use it. The idea is that everytime I buy something online, a donation is made to the charity of my choice without it costing me any extra. So when I ordered the washing machine, John Lewis made a donation to my chosen charity (Oxfam). Lots of companies have signed up to this. You can find out more here where a video will show you all about it.

Savvy Online Shoppers started over on Kate on Thin Ice’s blog where she encourages you to check out an easy way to ensure that money goes to charity when you shop online at no extra cost to you. Read more here

2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 25, 2012 4:09 pm

    Thanks so much for taking part. Really interesting and detailed answers too. Glad you like Give As You Live

    • May 26, 2012 11:49 am

      Great questions. Very thought-provoking, and a good way to promote Give as You Live.

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