Each year on Black Friday, the day after the Thanksgiving holiday in America, consumers rush out for extraordinary deals offered by retailers. Years past saw entire throngs of people waiting outside for hours before the sales began in hopes of being first to get one of the highly coveted, deeply discounted items once the doors opened. People were in such a hurry to get into the stores that ones in front would find themselves trampled in the rush.
More Online Black Friday Shoppers
Online shopping has revolutionized how consumers spend their hard-earned cash. In 2011, some 50 million Americans spent an overwhelming $816 million on Black Friday – and that’s just what they spent online. The dollar amount was up 26% from what they spent in 2010, and the number of people who visited online retail websites increased by 35%. The most visited website was eBay, followed closely by Amazon, both of which are closely associated with PayPal. Here are some of the things that PayPal does that has helped the growth of internet shopping.
Multiple Currencies – Since teaming up with eBay, the world’s largest auction website, PayPal has since allowed retailers to buy and sell globally with their “Multiple Currencies” feature. This allows transactions with two dozen currencies including, but certainly not limited to, the US and Canadian dollars, the Swiss Franc, the Euro, the Mexican Peso, and the Turkish Lira. Buyers have the advantage of their payment being automatically converted while sellers can supervise various types of financial transactions using their PayPal account.
Secure Transactions – When you go into a store, especially on a day like Black Friday when retail locations are swarmed with extra people, chances are higher that your wallet or purse could be stolen. Someone could swipe your credit card information. Nefarious individuals can compromise information you use to complete an online transaction, but with an online retailer that’s PayPal Verified, that’s less likely to happen. Since they first started providing financial services to the public more than a decade ago, as scam artists developed new ways to attack individuals online accounts PayPal teamed up with the FBI and bought out Fraud Sciences to help bust crime rings and lessen the risk of future crimes.
Mobile Payments – People are relying on mobile devices more and more for completing their online shopping transactions, and it’s not just their smartphones. iPads and the Kindle Fire allow online shopping, which is especially handy for websites like Amazon which sync with your PayPal account for one-click purchasing. With this feature, one click checks out the items in your shopping cart and sends you a receipt via email – which you can also check with your device.
Save Money – PayPal has made online shopping so convenient that I don’t care if I ever see the inside of another shopping mall. E-shopping saves the time it takes to get dressed and go to each individual store. It saves wear and tear on my vehicle as well as the fuel I’d use to drive from place to place. And because a lot of online retailers offer discounts and other perks like free shipping, I usually end up spending less money. Because I use my PayPal account I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to pay off a credit card bill at the end of the month, or extra interest fees that I’m penalized in the event that I don’t pay my credit card debt down to a zero balance. And because I rarely write checks anymore, the ones I found at www.personalchecksplus.com will last me longer than they would have before I had a PayPal account.
Credit Score Bonus
Unless you apply for and receive a PayPal Extras MasterCard, you can only shop with the money that’s in your PayPal account. This means that unlike shoppers who are out racking up debts in order to buy everything on their Christmas, birthday, or other shopping list, PayPal users enjoy no annual fee. Unlike an actual checking account, PayPal does not affect your credit score in either direction unless you create a negative balance and fail to resolve it. From one year to the next, more and more people are turning to the internet to meet their retail needs, and as long as they do you can be sure that PayPal will be developing new technologies to enhance their experience.
About the Author
Jason Monroe is a freelance author who first hopped online back in 2003. He has since used his computer for everything from looking up facts about his latest series of articles to researching best value checks for use with his personal bank account. When he isn't writing, Jason escapes his office for more natural settings where he can be found hiking or mountain biking with friends.