June 07, 2010

Do We Need Social Shopping?

There are Web sites that let you share information and photographs with a select group of people online. Now you can share with everyone how you are spending your money by using websites like Blippy and Swipely.

Because it’s too inconvenient to call up everyone you know and tell them what you’ve bought, you can do it virtually. Whether you’ve bought antihistamines or a designer suit, you can broadcast your purchases with a few keystrokes.

Maybe you aren’t interested in sharing your personal shopping adventures, but you want to find out what other people are buying. You can snoop on other shoppers by looking at their profiles. You might even find out where they bought something and what they paid for it.

To participate, you need to enroll and give your credit card information so the Web site can update your purchases. If you don’t want to hand over your credit card information, you could type in everything you buy. What I can’t figure out is why would anyone would do either of those things.

Swipely claims to “turn purchases into conversations” and wants you to “recommend purchase experiences, discover new places and products through trusted friends, save money, and have more fun shopping.” Blippy says it is a “fun and easy way to see and discuss what everyone is buying.” I am afraid that if you are that interested in shopping, you are missing out on a lot of valuable experiences in life.
Supporters of shopping Web sites allege that you can become a more responsible consumer by posting all your purchases. However, if you want to capture your purchases to keep track of your spending, you can write everything in a notebook or on an index card. If you prefer to keep the information in digital form, you can use budgeting or accounting software.

Don’t be fooled by Swipely when they say, “Our vision is to reinvent how people shop, share and save by adding value to every swipe.” The only value you are adding is to the companies that track how people shop and then aim advertising at them to get them to buy even more.
Do you think social shopping is a good idea? If you do, how would you use it? Click on Post a Comment, below, and tell us.

Organized by Marcie: Getting you organized so you have time to do what you love to do!

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