December 27, 2012 - 4:38 PM
Holiday customs are constantly changing and Boxing Day is no exception.
While some people still opt for waking up in the wee hours of the morning on Dec. 26 for some of the best deals of the year, online shopping has become a popular Boxing Day shopping option.
For tech-savy shoppers, online shopping is a way to avoid the slick roads and busy lineups while easily browsing through endless products. Though online shopping is nothing new, shoppers may be noticing a few incentives online to sway them from entering stores. For example, Future Shop had better online deals this year than their Kamloops location.
Future Shop's communications manager, Elliott Chun, said there has been a major push to online shopping by the electronics box store.
"We are putting an emphasis on the web," Chun said. "That's where our customers are heading."
According to Chun online services continue to grow. This year was the first year customers had the option of shopping via their mobile devices.
"We are no longer restricted by how we sell or what we sell," he said.
One of the seeming problems of online shopping is the lack of customer service. While most companies are a toll-free phone call away, the thought of sitting on hold listening to elevator music can be disheartening. Vancouver-based Lululemon is breaking down this barrier with a customer service chat function that connects website browsers to staff who quickly answer customer questions in an informal live chat format.
While Chun said online shopping is increasing in popularity, he said there are still reasons to visit local Future Shop locations for Boxing Day and Boxing Week deals.
"The big benefit is not only the tradition on the 26th, but the immediacy," he said, adding that some people like the tangibility of walking into the store and walking out with products.
While Boxing Day continues to be the biggest sales day of the year for Future Shop, Chun said Cyber Monday, a discount shopping day based online the Monday following United States Thanksgiving, is increasing in popularity.
Chun said Future Shop was the first Canadian company to implement the one-day shopping event in 2010. He said it was a result from a major spike in online shoppers in 2009.
"It's had resounding success," he said.
What started as a day of discounted shopping has grown into a full week, and Chun said deals continue to be posted both online and in the store until Jan. 3.
— Jessica Wallace
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2012