For women in general and Pakistan in particular, shopping is an essential part of their everyday routine. When women shop, it not only constitutes to frivolous spending on clothes and accessories, which accounts for a small part of it, but also spending on basic items that keeps their household in smooth functioning. This is not something alien to a specific income group, but it is observed across the board in every society.
Traditionally, shopping was all about visiting retail stores and physically spending on items which you need or want. That was the only option people had a few decades ago. With the introduction of technology, people started having other options like buying through phone calls by watching TVCs or listening to promotions on the Radio. Again, such activities were done mostly by women who had the access. But back then, such modes of shopping were seen as frivolous and scorned upon.
Now in the postmodern era, with the advent of advanced technology along with internet connectivity, businesses and entrepreneurs have grasped this opportunity to introduce to people another option to shop with minimal movement required. Even though retail shopping remains as a relevant and important part everyone’s life, at least those who can’t afford or don’t prefer such activity, have another option now.
Online shopping is a phenomenon that has taken the world by storm with giants like Amazon.com and EBay among others. With just a few clicks, millions of variety of one product is at your disposable which was unfathomable before. It is accepted by potential customers as convenient and cost effective.
Businesses have used countless ways to attract and convince customers to buy online. One of the most effective and popular marketing method is through Social Media Marketing. As social media has attracted millions of visitors through the years, this has become the ultimate marketplace for business. So it is convenient for them to can call upon potential customers through sponsoring ads and hosting events.
Focusing back to women customers, technology has definitely made shopping easier for them. Major industry like food and fashion among others, where the interest of women is higher as compared, have introduced online shopping websites for women to easily access commodities they want.
Variety is everything for women when it comes to shopping. Through the availability of online stores for women in Pakistan, it has become convenient for those who are working, those residing in different far fetched cities and even housewives, to explore a variety of things from the convenience of their homes.
In the fashion industry of Pakistan, brands like Khaadi, Sapphire, Nishat, and Generation among others have made an online presence with their website showcasing all their collections. With frequent discounts and sales, they have managed to attract a considerable amount of traffic, particularly women customers online. There are also online marketplaces in Pakistan including Tesoro.pk and Kaymu.pk where a variety of categories can be explore by both women and men.
Businesses have also identified grocery shopping as a potential for online venture. Grocery shopping is largely seen as a women centric activity. Thus, a few online portals like CartPk.com, Tazamart.com along with others have started this service of listing all fresh and packed foods of different companies under one platform and delivering them to you in time. Even though it’s not a widely used option, but it’s a good venture as this will enable women to avoid going to shady vegetable and fruit vendors as well as skip long queues in the grocery section of local malls.
In terms of payment of online purchases, in Pakistan Cash on Delivery (COD) is widely popular payment method. From women’s perspective, this is majorly because they don’t trust the online payment system, plus they have an option of cancelling the order without the worry of money getting lost. Also, as long as they don’t get the items delivered to them, the level of anxiety remains. Thus, in many ways COD is seen as a very convenient and trustworthy method as it is a smooth transitional method from paying over the counter to payment online through credit/debit card.
The option of online shopping for women has definitely changed the entire shopping experience for women, in Pakistan particularly. Even though, it is confined to only those who have access to the internet, which is a small portion of the total women population of the country, still it has gone a long way. Women are no longer dependent on someone to take them out for shopping or take out a considerable amount of their time to roam around retail stores, when they can get exactly what they want online, without going anywhere. They can explore and buy online for women’s accessories, clothes, food items and other essentials easily and conveniently.