Cyber ShoppingCyber-shopping and the ConsumerChristmas holidays are synonymous with laughter, carols and family gatherings. Along with thesepleasurable holiday experiences, another more frustrating task must be confronted: the long and arduoustask of shopping for gifts for friends and loved ones. In recent years, the use of online Internet shopping hashelped to transform this chore and the drudgery of everyday shopping. No longer must shoppers trudgestore-to-store seeking the best bargain or finding that elusive item because the use of the Internet as ashopping medium has empowered shoppers with advantages over traditional storefront shopping.One of the primary advantages shoppers have discovered with Internet shopping is an increase in the timeavailable for shopping. Unlike traditional stores which have fixed shopping hours, online stores are open forbusiness twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week allowing shoppers to browse and purchase goodsonline around the clock without ever havin...The consumer no longer needs to buy solely from the local store or major chain but is able to accessinformation and buy directly from the manufacturer’s or wholesaler’s website. The increased number ofvendors the consumer has to choose from allows for a more competitive marketplace and a lower bottomline price for the shopper. This increase in convenience and access has led many consumers to use theInternet for day-to-day shopping needs. Along with extended shopping hours, the online shopper is able tobrowse an immense range of online stores in search of the needed merchandise.An additional benefit the online shopper receives over the traditional shopper is the ability to compare pricesbetween vendors without running from store to store.Internet shoppers find that being able to shop at any hour is only one of many conveniences that onlineshopping offices. Rather than being limited to the stores found in the local community, the Internet shoppercan browse stores from all areas of the country and world. In addition to greater flexibility in comparingprices, consumers find that the online merchant can offer cheaper prices because of decreased overheadand employee expense. These online stores can not only be accessed anytime a shopper has a freemoment; but also provide the shopper with the benefits of avoiding traditional shopping hassles like crowdedstores, long checkout lines, and congested parking lots.The increasingly hectic pace of our society leaves its members with less and less time for the daily activitiesof life. With the increased number of stores able to be accessed, the quantity and quality of merchandiseavailable to the shopper has increased exponentially. The shopper can peruse merchandise in major chainstores, local specialty shops, as well as second hand services such as E-bay in the search for needed items.This forces the traditional merchant to increase prices to sustain an adequate profit margin. The traditionalmerchant faces large overhead costs in maintaining a physical store to display items and employees tostock, maintain and sell the items to the public.