Taking the Ethical Ambiguity Out of Shopping Online
Can you remember a time before you could shop online? I sure do, but it feels like a vague and distant past. We used to ask each other if we'd ever shop online, but these days it's almost a given.
Even people who have opted for a simpler lifestyle on a homestead take advantage of the opportunity to shop online for items they may not be able to find in their local stores. And yes, most of those folks are quite happy to benefit from the savings that go along with buying online!
Ethics of Shopping Online
Much as I prefer to shop locally, we're not made of money. If I can't afford the price my local merchant is charging, of course I will hop online to see if I can find a better one!
Do I feel bad about not buying from my local business? Sometimes. But then I remind myself that the dollars I save by ordering an expensive item like a computer online will inevitably go back into my community.
Whether it goes to a community fundraiser, to the thrift shop that funds programming for special needs populations and our seniors, or whether it gets spent on locally grown food at the farmers market, the dollars saved do benefit my own community.
Savings Meet Fundraising in Some Online Shops
Some web sites really take the ethical ambiguity out of shopping online by adding a social benefit to the lure of saving money. On these sites, some part of the money spent will go towards a worthy cause. You may have the option to donate your loyalty program points. Or the business may be donating part of the proceeds from sales on specially designated items to a charity they support. And of course, some online shops are even run by charities themselves!
Some sites get really creative about social responsibility, and in fact the whole concept of certain sites revolves around that aspect of giving back to the community. For The Schools is an example of one site site. Yes, it's an online shopping gateway that offers some pretty attractive savings.
But the entire premise of this site is that when you shop, they donate money to a school, amateur sports team, or club fundraiser that you choose. You can even help your local groups get set up to receive donations through the site. So you can still save money through their cash back stores and savings coupons. But in saving by shopping online, you're doing good for your local community too!
Image Credit » http://pixabay.com/en/bag-shopping-eco-friendly-jute-416586/