About 27% of the US population comprises elders aged 60 or above who live independently and majority of them do not know online shopping. Even with all the old-age benefits that the government provides, living alone is cumbersome for older folk. It doesn’t hurt to have a helping hand to run errands or do chores around the house. Some elders even experience debilitating or disabling medical conditions, making driving or making trips to the grocery store tough.
As the fear and paranoia surrounding COVID-19 envelop the world, elders aged 85 or above are at the greatest risk of contracting this deadly disease. Whether it’s for regular medical checkups, or buying groceries from the market, stepping out of the house is dangerous. It’s in times like these that online shopping offers sustainable alternatives to elders.
With online retailers taking over e-commerce, shoppers have abundant online options to choose from. Unlike shopping at brick and mortar stores, elders don’t have to waste their time going from store to store or aisle to aisle in search of one product.
Finding what you need is as easy as typing it in the search bar. Whether it’s fashion accessories, furniture, medicines, or groceries, you’ll find more than a few spiralized websites for each. This is a tremendous improvement in how elders shop. All they have to do is click on a website, choose the products you need, checkout, and pay.
Some retailers offer no limit on orders, which makes the shopping experience seamless and value-additive for elders. They can order anything they need at any time without any issues.
But most of all, shopping online prevents physical interactions. They don’t have to touch doors, carts, or products that could be carrying the virus or meet people at a short distance and expose themselves to potential carriers.
Even with all the SOPs in place, you can never be protected enough. Especially for elders, it’s best to stay home because they’re immunocompromised as is.
How often have you met an elderly shopper in the queue, taking intolerably long to count items and pay? Elders have to face rude reactions and conceal their embarrassment. You can’t possibly urge an 80-year-old to push their cart out of your way or count faster. But being in a crowded marketplace puts extra pressure on them to act fast.
With online shopping, there’s no urgency. Elderly shoppers can take their sweet time selecting their products, reevaluating their cart items, and punching in the payment details. There’s no one telling them, “Excuse me, Sir, could you please go faster?” A statement as menial as this can trigger anxiety and spoil the shopping experience.
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