Consumers are getting lazy. I think we can all agree with this statement. We can buy almost anything we want and have it delivered. Amazon alone has nearly the entire world available for next day shipping. Grubhub and Uber Eats will bring you food from almost any restaurant in your area. In the past, I have chosen my housing by who delivers in that area. I no longer need to consider those logistics.
Along with having my food delivered, I can have all my clothes, electronics, furniture, and entertainment delivered also. Shopping has become less of an outside activity than an in-home activity. I can peruse thousands of websites to find exactly what I am seeking and have it delivered the next day. How amazing is that?
Admittedly, online shopping and next day delivery are killing local retail stores and small businesses. I know this and have lamented it for years. But I have recently been forced to look at it from another perspective. How could this shift in business traffic, money flow, and consumer habits be a good thing?
I am an introvert and hate going out in public. I hate shopping. I hate crowds. I hate noisy restaurants with a hundred televisions distracting me. If I could avoid all of those things and stay home, I would take advantage of it. I think thousands of other introverts would also. The new consumerism gives me that freedom. Now, rather than just having the selections that the local retail shops have chosen to carry, I have the entire world of options to select from. This does have its own issues – too many options can be a problem. However, I can take as long as I want to make my choice in the comfort of my own home, without needing to leave the house or spend time going to different stores or even getting dressed. No crowds, no limited variety, no limited sizes, no limits at all really.
I have stopped complaining about Amazon taking over the world. They are but I no longer see it as a bad a thing as I used to. Our consumer habits are changing as they have always changed. Businesses need to change with it or die. Malls are going to disappear and I’m not really sad about that. Imagine what our cities and neighborhoods would look like if all the strip malls and ugly retail parking lots disappeared. How could that be a bad thing?
I still prefer to do my grocery shopping the old fashioned way and I still do most of my own cooking. I also prefer a good bookstore over Amazon any day, but for items that I don’t need immediately and that can be packed in a box, online shopping is now my friend. Please delivery my world to me. It would be a great future if I never ever have to stand in the lone open checkout lane behind six other people. That is something I will never miss.