I’m not a huge shopper, but whenever I shop online, I always check Amazon to see if they have cheaper prices, or at the very least, faster and free shipping using my Amazon Prime membership. Even with Amazon now collecting sales tax in some states You can get just about anything from there. I even got a big 42 inch TV on Amazon!
There is one feature that I’m a little leery of, and that’s the site’s one-click shopping feature. Some say it’s a convenient way to shop; others think it’s a dangerous ploy to bust your budget.
How It Works
You don’t have to be an Amazon Prime account holder or a frequent online shopper to take advantage (or disadvantage) of one-click shopping. Amazon automatically signs you up for it the very first time you place an order on the site. Amazon saves your payment and shipping information, so that you can click the “Buy now with 1-click” button on subsequent purchases; if you use that option – you can easily bypass it – you’ll skip the whole shopping cart portion of the checkout. Instead, your order will automatically be billed to the default address and credit card Amazon has on file.
You don’t have to enable one-click shopping permanently, however. Turn it off by selecting the “1-click settings” option from the settings menu inside the “Your Account” tab. You’ll see a yellow button on the right side of the screen that lets you turn one-click shopping off (or, allow you to enable it if you choose).
Why I Like It
If you’re someone who does a lot of shopping online, or if you have a Kindle, then you already know how great the one-click option is. It saves time by letting customers skip that shopping cart portion of the checkout process.
When you’re in a rush, there’s nothing better than saving time. With one-click shopping, there’s no need to add an item to your cart, then go to the cart and follow the checkout process. Just click and you’re done. This is great for some of the subscribe and save staples that Amazon sells.
Why I Think It’s Dangerous
Let’s ignore the fact that Amazon tried to screw the rest of the online shopping world by attempting to patent the one-click shopping technology. Let’s also ignore the fact that while the European Patent Office rejected Amazon’s repeated efforts to monopolize the computer script that makes one-click shopping possible, for some inexplicable reason, the U.S. Patent Office granted Amazon the patent. That, in itself, is a crock.
But I also think this is merely a marketing and technology ploy – albeit a very effective ploy – to eliminate a buyer’s chance to think twice about a purchase. By decreasing the amount of time it takes for a shopper to make a purchase, I worry you’re going to increase the frequency of buyer’s remorse. This means more last-minute order cancellations or returns. But not everyone is willing to accept that they’ve made an impulse buy, and won’t necessarily take the steps to stop the transaction. This is what Amazon is hoping for when it comes to one-click shopping – that remorseful shoppers won’t be remorseful enough to cancel the purchase.
Reader, do you think Amazon (and other sites that offer similar express checkout options) are taking advantage of consumers and their impulse to buy? Why or why not?