Online Shopping vs. In-Store Shopping: Is There Really a Difference?

Who doesn’t love going to the mall and spending all of their money on the trendiest new outfit or the most popular gadget? One problem with the luxury of shopping is that it usually takes countless hours to find precisely what you’re looking for. Over the years, shopping has evolved and is currently available via the internet. Online shopping is supposed to save time and the hassle of calculating prices at the register to ensure you have enough for what you bought. You also can avoid long lines, and there are usually are more sizes in stock online than in stores.

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An excessively long line outside a Coach Outlet in Woodburn, Oregon on Black Friday. Photo courtesy of Statesman Journal.

Although there are many perks to online shopping, is it truly better than shopping in stores? The joy of getting home and showing your friends what you bought, or getting what you want the day you find it isn’t present through online shopping. Although online shopping is much easier, part of physically begin in the store is part of the experience.

Not only is the experience evident in in-store shopping, but the cliché “shopping is my cardio” t-shirt proves a point. Shopping is a source of exercise, and according to the University of Hawaii, the average 150 pound shopper burns 200 calories per hour while shopping. This burning of calories is typically for people who walk 1.5 miles per hour, so the faster you walk, the more calories you burn. However, for an online shop, you only burn around 45 calories an hour from sitting down. However, this may not seem like a lot; if you go to the mall once a week for two hours, you can lose six pounds in a year just from shopping. The more you wander in the mall, the number of pounds you lose per year can increase.

Of course, I’m not saying you should shop in stores just because you can burn calories, because malls can get hectic, especially during the holiday season. I, too, am guilty of clicking the order button instead of physically getting up to go out to buy what I want.

Malls can get too crazy, especially as Black Friday approaches. The important thing is to shop smartly. If you know you live in an area with over-populated malls, staying in for Black Friday would be wise. You can wait three days for Cyber Monday to get the same deals online. Cyber Monday is a better alternative because there are many more items in stock and even more of a sale. Holidays such as Labor Day, Martin Luther King Day, and Memorial Day tend to be three unexpected holidays where clothing stores tend to have big sales. If you plan on buying a surplus of sweaters this winter, either get them during the summer or wait until January, where you can get them half off from Abercrombie on Martin Luther King Day.

No matter what your shopping preference is to make sure not to take your products for granted. Taking an hour out of your month or even year to clean out your closet to donate to the less fortunate could make someone’s day.

By: Julia Marotti’21, Staff Writer

Categories: Opinions