Is Online Shopping The Ultimate Distraction? Ad Lab Explains

The ease with which people can browse thousands of everyday items at the tip of their fingers is both a blessing and a curse. Being able to purchase a wide variety of products without leaving your chair is hugely advantageous to the less physically inclined, but persistent overuse can severely compromise other aspects of your life.

David Newman, Managing Director of eCommerce growth agency Ad Lab explains the very first task for many people upon receiving their paycheck, is working out how they are going to spend it, and in today’s world, that means online.

The explosion of technology, ease of access to the internet and volume of eCommerce stores has made online shopping more accessible and attractive than ever before.

This has become a notable issue within many workplaces across the country as employees are now using their time to purchase items on marketplaces like Amazon and eBay, rather than working on the tasks they are being paid to complete.

According to a study reported by The Telegraph in 2015, employees were wasting up to 759 hours per year due to workplace distractions. Among the many causes, online shopping accounted for over 20% of the total time people spent procrastinating.

The selection of workplace distractions included; Noisy offices, bad office technology, mobile phones, pointless meetings, social media and uncomfortable chairs. Now that online shopping has been thrown into the mix, it’s no wonder mounds of work remains incomplete at many companies.

Although online shopping can cause distractions at the workplace, for many people, the activity is highly therapeutic and reduces both stress and anxiety levels. This is highly beneficial for both productivity and morale for employees during the working day.

A survey reported by Time Magazine in 2013, discovered that 52% of the American population engaged in “Retail therapy”, which is the act of shopping and spending to enhance someone’s mood. Given the length of time people are spending at work, this activity would be ideal for the improvement of harmony amongst employees.

eCommerce stores offer a wide range of benefits since employees are able to interact with like-minded people within marketplace communities as well as being able to boost their own creative flair by engaging with tasteful items.

So long as the duration of time people are using online shopping is monitored, the idea of “Retail therapy” could prove to be the perfect escapism needed for any workforce to truly flourish.

This article was written by David Newman, who is the Managing Director of eCommerce growth agency, Ad Lab. David has spoken about this topic at various eCommerce growth summits across Europe.

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