Click ‘Til You Drop
I remember as a child getting on the train in the Bronx and going downtown to Macy’s with my parents. It was an event, a 45-minute trip, filled with anticipation. It was shopping for my folks, and an Orange Julius and hot dog at Nedick’s for me. I don’t know which was better, the train ride, the hot dog, or the Orange Julius. Macy’s on 34th Street in Manhattan was billed as “The world’s largest department store.” It was. In fact, it was enormous. Eight or nine floors connected by rickety, but charmingly real wooden escalators (cahlick…cahlick…cahlick) and elevators with metal lattice gates manned by neatly uniformed, white-gloved, professional elevator operators. “Fifth Floor, ladies lingerie ” …to the snickering of the boys on the elevator.
Cut to last week. My wife and I needed to buy a baby gift. We made a 4.5 second trip on the Internet and found three “stores” and eleven product options. All this while still in our underwear. Ecommerce is remarkable. Fast, easy, safe and efficient. For businesses today, it offers massive reach and appeal. Ecommerce allows business to avoid costly inventory and revenue reporting mismanagement, security and shoplifting issues and storefront image problems. Moreover, it allows entrepreneurs the ability to test new products and ideas without the imposing expense of a brick and mortar investment. With Ecommerce, the store is always open, we don’t have to pay for gas, there’s plenty of parking and no surly salespeople who thought they had the day off.
In a time-strapped reality, we’re okay with going online to shop. We can compare prices, quality and options instantly. We are happy to replace the cahlick..cahlick..cahlick of the Macy’s escalator with the convenient quick click click of the keyboard.
Now if only someone, somehow, some way could figure out how to get me that hot dog and Orange Julius and throw in a Thanksgiving Day parade without me leaving my computer…we’re golden.