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The financial part of a transaction might be processed in real time (for example, letting the consumer know their credit card was declined before they log off), or might be done later as part of the fulfillment process.
Customers are attracted to online shopping not only because of the high level of convenience, but also because of the broader selection, competitive pricing, and greater access to information.
Shipping a small number of items, especially from another country, is much more expensive than making the larger shipments bricks-and-mortar retailers order.
Some retailers (especially those selling small, high-value items like electronics) offer free shipping on sufficiently large orders.
The process is called business-to-consumer (B2C) online shopping.
The US billion worth of clothes sold online represented about 13% of the domestic market, and with 72% of women looking online for apparel, it has become one of the most popular cross-shopping categories.
Online shoppers commonly use a credit card to make payments.
Some sites will not accept international credit cards.
For example, the online shoe retailer includes labels for free return shipping, and does not charge a restocking fee, even for returns which are not the result of merchant error.
One advantage of shopping online is being able to quickly seek out deals for items or services with many different vendors (though some local search engines do exist to help consumers locate products for sale in nearby stores).