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The Internet Is Changing Retailing Monday January 9, 2012

The Internet Is Changing Retailing

Honda Motor Corporation is not happy these days. Neither is Best Buy Nand many other retailers. The reason is the use of the Internet to make shopping decisions and purchases. You see about 50% of all purchases are based on research done online. Consumers have greater access to information and reviews and are becoming more informed and more able to find the best deals.

Honda doesnt like the business operated as TrueCar.com. TrueCar features dealers who offer no-more-haggling prices often below dealer invoice pricing. Really. Below dealer invoice pricing. And Honda doesnt like the TrueCar.coms promotion of below dealer invoice prices as this will hurt dealer margins and profitability.

Lets move on to the Best Buy. Many are saying that Best Buy has become little more than a showroom for Amazon. One goes into a Best Buy store, compares products, and then orders it online from Amazon at a cheaper price and generally NO SALES TAX. You can even place your order from Amazon on your Iphone WHILE STANDING IN BESTBUY.

Netflix is credited with putting Blockbuster and other video retailers out of business and iTunes is killing off the CD music business.

Is the power of the Internet making things better or worse? Less sales tax paid is good for the consumer, but bad for the states coffers. And if storefront retailers go out of business as Blockbuster and others have done what are we faced with. Shopping plazas with no anchor tenants lead to deserted shopping plazas. The Recession and big box stores have brought us enough empty shopping plazas. Now the Internet is adding to this wasteland. That is not good for the economy. That is bad for the economy BUT it is the natural evolution of shopping.

We now buy airline tickets online. Reserve rental cars online. Buy books and music online. Heck I just bought a bicycle on Craigslist and a kickstand from Ebay.

Online shopping is here to stay and more jobs will be lost as a result.