Is it ethical to shop online for non essentials?

mssmelanie

O.G.
Jul 6, 2006
3,574
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NJ
Hi All - I'm having a an internal struggle. Is it ethical for me to be shopping online for non essential items during this time? On one hand, I'm thinking I'm keeping the economy going by making purchases. My last purse purchase, I used my Saks SA's link to make a purchase so I'm pretty sure she got a commission for it as she thanked me for my purchase. On the other hand, am I risking the health of those working to fulfill these orders? That purchase certainly could've waited until this was all over.

It's not quite the same, but in the past it has bothered me that certain non essential retail stores stay open on holidays and I would feel badly that those workers aren't off to share the holidays with their loved ones.

I don't know if we have anyone here that works for a large or small business that deal with customers ordering non essential items online or for pickup and get their thoughts. Should I keep on ordering or put them in my Pinterest for now and get them when this is all done. Are these workers resentful that people are still ordering non essential items, or are they thankful to be working? I want to be sensitive to what's going on in the world.

I appreciate your thoughts on this. Thanks!
 

muchstuff

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Jun 6, 2014
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Vancouver
Hi All - I'm having a an internal struggle. Is it ethical for me to be shopping online for non essential items during this time? On one hand, I'm thinking I'm keeping the economy going by making purchases. My last purse purchase, I used my Saks SA's link to make a purchase so I'm pretty sure she got a commission for it as she thanked me for my purchase. On the other hand, am I risking the health of those working to fulfill these orders? That purchase certainly could've waited until this was all over.

It's not quite the same, but in the past it has bothered me that certain non essential retail stores stay open on holidays and I would feel badly that those workers aren't off to share the holidays with their loved ones.

I don't know if we have anyone here that works for a large or small business that deal with customers ordering non essential items online or for pickup and get their thoughts. Should I keep on ordering or put them in my Pinterest for now and get them when this is all done. Are these workers resentful that people are still ordering non essential items, or are they thankful to be working? I want to be sensitive to what's going on in the world.

I appreciate your thoughts on this. Thanks!
I'm shopping online locally and the businesses I'm supporting have thanked me profusely for helping to support them during a time when they're unable to conduct business any other way. We may be the difference between them being able to open up again or not when this is all over.
 

babypanda

O.G.
Dec 30, 2009
411
845
Hi All - I'm having a an internal struggle. Is it ethical for me to be shopping online for non essential items during this time? On one hand, I'm thinking I'm keeping the economy going by making purchases. My last purse purchase, I used my Saks SA's link to make a purchase so I'm pretty sure she got a commission for it as she thanked me for my purchase. On the other hand, am I risking the health of those working to fulfill these orders? That purchase certainly could've waited until this was all over.

It's not quite the same, but in the past it has bothered me that certain non essential retail stores stay open on holidays and I would feel badly that those workers aren't off to share the holidays with their loved ones.

I don't know if we have anyone here that works for a large or small business that deal with customers ordering non essential items online or for pickup and get their thoughts. Should I keep on ordering or put them in my Pinterest for now and get them when this is all done. Are these workers resentful that people are still ordering non essential items, or are they thankful to be working? I want to be sensitive to what's going on in the world.

I appreciate your thoughts on this. Thanks!
I understand your dilemma but I feel there is absolutely nothing wrong with you ordering non essentials. If I was a business owner I would be grateful to still be receiving orders. This must be really scary times for businesses because even after the lock down is over, economy probably won’t pick up quickly. People will most likely be spending less the first couple of years.
On a personal level I am shopping less in general but I did make a small non essential purchase a couple of weeks ago. It was an item I’ve been eyeing for a long time and it went on sale so I ordered it.
If an item makes you happy and isn’t putting strain on your finances go for it. We all need to keep our sanity ! A small gift to self has magical powers for lifting the mood :smile: And you might be helping someone keep their job!
 
Apr 15, 2007
63,183
6,825
I'm shopping online locally and the businesses I'm supporting have thanked me profusely for helping to support them during a time when they're unable to conduct business any other way. We may be the difference between them being able to open up again or not when this is all over.
I understand your dilemma but I feel there is absolutely nothing wrong with you ordering non essentials. If I was a business owner I would be grateful to still be receiving orders. This must be really scary times for businesses because even after the lock down is over, economy probably won’t pick up quickly. People will most likely be spending less the first couple of years.
On a personal level I am shopping less in general but I did make a small non essential purchase a couple of weeks ago. It was an item I’ve been eyeing for a long time and it went on sale so I ordered it.
If an item makes you happy and isn’t putting strain on your finances go for it. We all need to keep our sanity ! A small gift to self has magical powers for lifting the mood :smile: And you might be helping someone keep their job!
There are ways of showing support now especially for small businesses that are struggling to stay alive.
Your business is valued & appreciated & you are helping make a difference in whether a business will survive or not.
Whether it be ordering food, books, puzzles , lipsticks, handbags whatever the "feel good" is,that's what is important.
I think we have to be sensitive as to what we share with others as their buying position may
have changed or likely has.
During this challenging time I think many of us will be doing what we can do to help keep businesses afloat.
 

muchstuff

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Jun 6, 2014
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Vancouver
There are ways of showing support now especially for small businesses that are struggling to stay alive.
Your business is valued & appreciated & you are helping make a difference in whether a business will survive or not.
Whether it be ordering food, books, puzzles , lipsticks, handbags whatever the "feel good" is,that's what is important.
During this challenging time I think many of us will be doing what we can do to help keep businesses afloat.
I'm ordering even when I know that belt-tightening is probably a better option. I'm trying to look locally as much as possible.
 

Chanbal

Member
Aug 18, 2012
5,302
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World citizen
This is an important question as shopping online involves people processing orders in stores or warehouses, shipping carriers... when we are all supposed to shelter in place. However, it is also important to support businesses as our economy and many jobs depend on it.

I'm still shopping online. I don't mind if the orders take a long time to arrive, and I don't do returns (I have already a couple of items for future consignment or donation). It is my way to support my favorite stores while minimizing their work.
 

babypanda

O.G.
Dec 30, 2009
411
845
Warehouse employees are there anyways. If there are no orders they will probably lose their jobs so I’m sure they’re happy to process the orders. Also I’d like to think most companies are respecting safety guidelines by reducing the number of employees and providing them with appropriate gear.
 

Kevinaxx

Member
Sep 18, 2016
626
762
343F5AF0-FEC0-4E84-B3EC-AF3B2F4B2E9E.jpeg I shop online sparingly... either for things I need like shampoo/food...

Or I shop to support businesses I approve of, either because they’re doing a good cause like olivela or, lululemon (for their ceo paying all employees until June regardless and also for not skimping on rent).


And the order/delivery is fast!
just ordered over the weekend:
 
Apr 15, 2007
63,183
6,825
View attachment 4709410 I shop online sparingly... either for things I need like shampoo/food...

Or I shop to support businesses I approve of, either because they’re doing a good cause like olivela or, lululemon (for their ceo paying all employees until June regardless and also for not skimping on rent).


And the order/delivery is fast!
just ordered over the weekend

+1
 

karman

Crazy Cat Lady
O.G.
Aug 19, 2006
17,450
7,544
Canada
I have been asking myself this question too. I do a lot of online shopping on a regular basis (pre-quarantine) and have certainly cut down on it in an attempt to be more financially responsible and not put unnecessary strain on workers who pack, ship and deliver he goods I order. My main concern is for the delivery and warehouse personnel - though I hope that their workplace will do their best to protect its employees.

I have certainly increased my patronage at local business that have remained open (to sell online) but closed to public. I've ordered everything from ice cream, bags of coffee, locally produced soap & hand sanitizer, and of course, delivery/takeout. Those business really seem to appreciate the support - one of my favourite local ice cream shops closed down completely for about a week when our city shut down all non-essential businesses (but stated they could remain operational as long as they do all transactions online), but when they figured out how to keep minimal staff on in order to keep their business going, they were so excited and now we can order ice cream for curb side pick up the next day. They limit orders to 50 per day so it's completely manageable on their end.

I have ordered the odd thing from eBay, H&M and LV - certainly with eBay and H&M I'm not really supporting anyone local, but when I buy from LV, I try to go through my sales associate's link so that he can get credit for the sale.

I stopped buying from Amazon because they are not shipping non-essential items until May (which I think is a good move), and for any essentials I'm fairly well stocked from local businesses and certainly now is not the time to make someone deliver my toilet paper/paper towels unless absolutely necessary. I understand Amazon doesn't treat their warehouse employees the greatest, so....
 

Egel

Member
Mar 9, 2020
176
293
There are enough replies about keeping money go round. I'm also really glad I am working now. Making overtime makes sure I get cought up in work and not panic by overthinking.

You also made a remark how you felt for non essential shops being open on a holiday, people not spending time with their loved ones. Do keep in mind that not everybody is surrounded with people who care. For them work could be an escape too.
 

rose60610

Member
Mar 8, 2011
1,650
5,256
Chicago
I've been online shopping and don't care how long anything takes to arrive. I also shop locally with businesses that have curb pick up. I'm careful to follow all the sanitization precautions and guidelines, self distance, and wash my hands like crazy. If I shopped my head off as long as I don't go beyond my means, I won't have one single guilt trip. Not a one.
 
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