Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The Wednesday Question (Online Shopping Edition)


So the other day, I was reading this article on Happi.com about a very strong shift in recent years toward consumers shopping online over shopping at brick-and-mortar stores (see the chart in that article). So that got me wondering: 

Do you mostly purchase your beauty products online these days, or do you still prefer to buy the majority of your beauty products in-store? 
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32 comments

  1. I'm probably 50-50. I like to shop in store to see and smell things, but sometimes I see a product tampered with so I end up ordering it online. Or sometimes something is sold out or it's hard to find in-store so to the internet I go...

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  2. I, by necessity, purchase mainly online. I live in a remote rural area, and we have Vons, Kmart, and Rite Aid as our shopping choices. So not much variety there.

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  3. Depends on the retailer. For example, with Sephora, I'll go in the store for something I have to have NOW, or to see a color, but there's no incentive to buying in the store over shopping online. I can shop online, spend my $25, get a weekly freebie, plus three samples, plus possibly beauty rewards, plus free shipping, plus my purchase which is more easily found in stock online...

    OR

    I can go to the store and walk out with only my purchase...if it is in stock at all. My locations rarely have the decent point bonuses and, although Sephora culture says "Sure, ask for samples," it is awkward at my Sephoras because it is tough to get a person who isn't with people. The folks at the register never just toss in samples--you have to ask and someone on the floor and they have to make them for you. It is way too much, especially when I'm having a social anxiety day.

    Online at Sephora all the way for me. Other retailers, like Ulta, are much more likely to get my in-person business.

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  4. I prefer to buy in store because I like to swatch beforehand. I have noticed that I can't find the deals in-store that I can find online. With things like Flash shipping at Sephora and finding your blog, most of my recent beauty purchases have been online. Also, the closest Ulta is 45 min away and the closest Sephora (In a JCP) is 1.5 hours away, so that puts a damper on buying in store as well. I haven't bought anything drugstore online yet though.

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  5. I prefer online due to Ebates and free gifts with $25 purchase at Sephora.

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  6. I purchase most of my beauty products in store just because I feel like I tend to get better deals in store and I detest paying for shipping. Stores also allow you to see a product in person which gives you a better idea of the color of the items. Luckily I live in a place where I can get most stuff I see in stores but if I lived somewhere with less accessibility to products I probably would buy more things online.

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  7. My shopping is based on product and proximity. I am a fragrance junkie and there aren't even bad department stores anywhere close to me, let alone cool boutiques, so that shopping is all done online w/preference to sites that sell samples. I have an Ulta within fairly easy reach so I shop in store. Nail polish I always check eBay first, drugstore items I follow sales in store. This blog has been incredibly helpful to find things both in store and online that I never would know about otherwise.

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  8. if I can buy it with a click Im up to it. but clearly it still depends on the items. I hate going to the mall having to search for a good parking space and then run al over searching for what I want. It easier to buy things online unless you don't know and just want to go recreational around the mall. Normally if I go to the mall I return empty handed...

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  9. Drugstore I almost always buy in a store, higher end is almost always online. Unless it's foundation and I am trying something new, then I go in so they can help me find a color. My reasons are as others said above, better perks to shop at Sephora online and ebates often offers 8% cash back.

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  10. I prefer to shop in an actual store. I really love my immediate gratification. I have been buying more indie nail products online. The things I buy are just not available in any brick and mortar store

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  11. Online, definitely. I have to admit, it is nice to be able to see some products in store, but it's not a necessity for me. I'm one of those people who doesn't like to leave my house if I don't have to. There's the stressful driving to whatever store it is, being in a potentially crowded small area, and dealing with people in general. Shopping usually isn't a fun experience for me except on very rare occasions when everything goes right. I'll stick to my zero pressure online shops.

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  12. I prefer to shop in person. Not only do I hate paying shipping on top of taxes (not to mention return postage which is NOT CHEAP), but online pictures are almost always misleading. They're meant to show the product in its best light, not what it looks like in typical light, or what it looks like on me, which is all far more important to me.

    I honestly don't care about samples since 90% are stuff I'll never use. Once in awhile I'll stumble across something really wonderful, but not often enough that it's any kind of factor for me.

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  13. I do about 90% of my shopping online. Anything that isn't groceries I try to buy online! My main reasons: there are always more sales and deals online, there's Ebates, I don't have to wait in line or find a spot in an overcrowded parking area, I can take my time to make my purchasing decisions without being pressured by sales associates, I'm sure products haven't been opened and tried on (this one is particularly true for drugstore makeup from brands that don't include safety seals. I WILL NOT buy anything L'Oreal in store for that reason).
    The only times I buy things in store is if I need something right away, the item isn't available online or the shipping costs are too high. And yes, sometimes I browse the drugstore makeup aisle when I pick up a prescription, but that's been rare lately.

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  14. Ebates has definitely swayed my decision to buy mostly online. Plus, with things like Sephora Flash and online only freebie codes, unless I need it right now, I buy online. I do wish Ulta would get on board with quicker shipping options for Platinum members or at least a lower free ship after purchase. But the number one reason I buy online is I can do it my undies, sitting on the couch, with a plate of nachos in front of me and no one can say a thing about it.

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  15. Normally I would say that I am an in-person shopper, but lately I've found myself doing a lot of online makeup shopping. Frequently at Ulta there will be online-only deals, bonuses, specials, etc. that I want to take advantage of. Also, I work near a fantastic Ulta that never blinks an eye at returns, so I feel pretty comfortable buying things online and returning them if they don't work for me. If Ulta didn't have that return policy, however, I think that I would be strictly in-person unless it was a repurchase that I knew I liked.

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  16. I do quite a bit of shopping online, but it's more about my social anxiety most of the time. I DO prefer shopping at Sephora online, rather than the store because of the reasons stated in mctina stated. Plus I subscribed to Flash shipping so I can order a lot or a little and I still get free shipping, samples, bonus samples and all the deals they have online that they don't in store. Ulta I shop at in person because I usually don't want to spend $50 with them for free shipping, but I do once in a while because of platinum perk deals. I do a lot of shopping at birchbox, as well, but there isn't a store in my area anyway so it has to be online. lol

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  17. Another Ebates addict here, so for Ulta and Sephora I mostly buy online. Limited edition drugstore products, though, I will look for and buy in brick & mortar stores.

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  18. I usually prefer to shop online because there are more/better sales/deals and access to more items that aren't available locally. Plus, shopping online usually yields more rewards, freebies/extras, and gift with purchases. I can't remember the last time I shopped in-store and was offered any of those things, even at Sephora, Ulta, Macy's etc. You always have to ask and the offerings are usually meh. I would say there is more incentive to shop mid to high-end products online versus drugstore products. I can get better sales/deals shopping in-store for drugstore items.

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  19. I prefer in store. It's hard to judge a color from a computer screen. Target, Walmart, K-mart, CVS, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Christmas Tree Shop, Sally's and Sephora are all within 5 miles of where I live. The only store that isn't around here is Ulta.

    I will buy online if there's a good sale, and also for things I can't find in a store. For instance, I'd like to get a few things from Essence, but it's not sold in any of the Target stores near me.

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  20. Well...I live in an area where within 30 minutes I have 2 Ultas, Sephora AND SiJP (in the same mall), a Cosmetics Company Outlet, a Bed, Bath and Beyond with the extended beauty department, 4 Sally's, several Burlington/Marshalls/Ross/T.J. Maxx, a whole slew of Rite Aids, CVSs, and Walgreens, a few 5 Belows, and multiple Walmarts, Targets, and Kmarts... :) Soooooo...I mostly shop in store LOL

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    Replies
    1. Dang... I want to live in your area, it sounds like heaven to a makeup junkie

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  21. I prefer shopping online, generally. I am busy and don't enjoy wasting time in-store. Sometimes, though, I have to go in-store to be color-matched, which I find to be easier than the return/exchange/reorder cycle that would result if I tried to order some things online.

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  22. Online almost exclusively. I am always working and never really shop recreationally except from my couch in my pj's. I find that online stores are so much more likely to have gift bags with samples that I feel like I'm getting more for my money. I hate shopping Sephora in person. My local one is SO high pressure and I swear they think everyone is a shoplifter. My local Macy's is nice but there's never any samples and it has few of the luxury brands. I shop pretty widely: mainly Sephora, Beauty.com, Ulta, and the actual sites of favorites like Bobbi Brown. I am starting to hate Beautybrands.com because they always short you on something. ALWAYS.

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  23. I am lucky enough to live in a large metropolitan area that has every kind of store to suit my whims. However, I am perhaps unlucky in that I loathe traffic and crowds (more than 5 people = a crowd, lol) so I do 90% of all my shopping online, even some groceries. I find online shopping has deeper stock, I get better deals (ebates, coupon codes, etc), free samples and rarely ever pay for shipping, so it's a win all around!

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  24. I always buy my sephora stuff online because of the samples and bonus with 25.00 purchase. I look at the products in the store though. I bought a few MAC palettes online because of the deals, but I looked at them in store first.

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  25. Gonna say that everyone has a different idea on what the color taupe is. It's better to see it in person, but there is massive good deals online. I just don't think it's the be all and end all of shopping.

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  26. Online shopping all the way! Many beauty brands have shipping thresholds that can easily be met, or sometimes they run promos for no-minimum shipping. Plus you can usually apply additional coupon codes, and get free samples.

    So I'll sometimes swatch in person, but end up purchasing online because there's just more incentive to do so.

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  27. I really enjoy shopping online more. But depends a lot on a persons region and availability and access to stores. I don't have a lot to choose from. I get tired of chasing something down all the time too. But I do buy a lot at Walgreens. My counter lady always shows u the deals and she shares coupons to Best Buy. She is Awesome that way. Saved enough to free makeup from points. Just not alit selection and stires r on the smaller scale. NO TARGET which saddens me a lot only Walmarts that can be picked over or don't have all the products they do carry online. No Milani. I just ordered all WnW new Brushes on site and Brinzer palette that they switched the colors of the names this time. And looks a lot better. But didn't want to chase down all those brushes one or two or three at a time. Love tax season.

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  28. I mostly buy online. For drugstore products, I used to think that in store would be better because of the sales and no shipping price, but it seemed that what I wanted was never in stock, and I'm lucky that I have lots of CVS and Walgreens near but I don't have time to hunt down certain products plus it wastes gas. Now I get almost everything drugstore from ULTA, it's super convenient having both drugstore and midrange together in one website, and they carry some stuff that's not in store yet here. The sales are not as good but I'd rather pay more than drive to every store around. Also shipping to Puerto Rico is fast and just $5.

    For midrange stuff I've only shopped in store once and that was a horrible experience. I wanted a Naked Palette from Sephora and ended up having to go to Macys. I think the service is better at my local Macys but they don't have as much variety as Sephora. Sometimes I go to Macy's to swatch and then buy online. Sephora just makes me anxious. The few times I've gone I'm never greeted or offered help even when the store is empty, but at the same time I get the feeling that the employees are watching me. Like they glanced at me but no greeting or even a smile. Macy's usually someone greets you and then they leave you alone to swatch until you ask for help. Mac I've never dared to go in. It's too intimidating. Plus online you get deals, promo codes, freebies, and sometimes you can avoid tax (PR is 11%) or get free shipping .

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  29. In person, I like to swatch and make sure the product will suit my skin tone!

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  30. I hate going out and interacting with people sooooo I'd rather shop online for the most part. With my Sephora Flash I hardly step foot in one anymore.

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  31. In store only. I like to see the product(s) in person. I'll look online to see new collections (usually Instagram or this blog over retail sites), then go and look at the store to see if I want the item(s). It would be too easy to overspend online; actually carrying the items in my hand or cart gives me a chance to let pre-buyer's remorse to set in and make me really think about the purchase.

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