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Online Retailer Play.com Considering Pay-On-Delivery

Published January 25, 2012 by |

Have you ever got to the checkout screen while shopping online and thought ‘I wish I could pay for this at my front door’? Well if so, such a service could soon be a possibility on Play.com.

Rakuten, the Japanese owners of owners of Play.com, are keen to implement a pay-on-delivery service for its customers, a facility that is already available in the companies home country.

“Shipping issues are the most common reason for cart abandonment in Europe , we’ve only offer a few shipping models. That’s alien to Rakuten. We’ve got to be more flexible to grow.” Marketing Director Adam Stewart told RetailWeek [Subscription required].

For most web-savvy people the notion of paying for items online is almost second nature, however some still distrust online shopping with scams and fraud still prevalent. As such, by offering a safer payment service the retailer hopes to attract those consumers who are put off from paying online.

For this move Play.com should be commended, as in case people missed it the internet is the future. Facilities or services that help people come to trust the internet as a viable and safe medium, when they would otherwise be uncertain of it , should be embraced with open arms, even if it’s as simple and as commonplace as online shopping.

Through bringing those who traditionally tend to avoid online shopping into the mix, Play.com — by way of successful implementation of a pay-on-delivery service, could gain ground on powerhouse Amazon, which still stands as the UK’s No.1 online retailer. Although, as with any popular service, should Play.com’s efforts be successful it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Amazon, as well as other online retailers launch similar offerings.

That in itself could have a major knock on effect. The majority of people who don’t shop online utilise the high street retailers, with that in mind the success of a venture designed to attract more people to online shopping could affect high street sales.