Don’t take offence, it’s not an insult.
Internet shopping continues to grow with a new name given to bargain hungry shoppers.
The Oxford Dictionary (REF1.) constantly displays the new word additions to its publication. New words come about due to many reasons including medical breakthroughs, social changes and technological advances. Suddenly people are describing you with a word you have never heard, but sometimes it may just not be an insult.
Vispol (or Visbol in some quarters) is a word that describes shoppers who visit Hight Street stores to see, view, touch and analyze a product they wish to purchase. Instead of buying the product in store they then go and purchase it on-line usually cheaper. Certain products are known for this type of act typically electrical goods (mainly white goods) and cars. Further product types have recently been added to the internet shopping cart phenomenon. Clothes and wedding products have fallen victim to the shopper vispols. Emma Dun recently purchased her wedding dress on eBay for £2.50 (REF2.) after trying to reduce the quoted £1500 price tag. Wedding balloon supplier Important Occasions openly admit on their website (REF3.) to being a site where Vispol shoppers turn too after visiting the local wedding fairs.
But why vispol ? VISPOL is an acronym for “Visit In Store Purchase OnLine” (other variants of Vispol have been VISBOL “Visit In Shop Buy OnLine”).
Some websites have gone further than vispol shopping and try to offer a full on-line experience to keep shoppers away from visiting the high street. Amazon now display several pages of their books on-line. Hopefully by displaying font, back and index pages this should provide enough requirement to turn “just-looking” shoppers into actual purchases. The ubiquitous itunes can play 20 seconds of any musical track to ensure users haven’t got “The power of Love” titled track by Hewy Lewis mixed up with the same-titled “Jennifer Rush Version”
Currys electrical superstore know many people visit the stores to view white goods (washing machines and fridges) and then buy cheaper on-line. With plummeting share prices and fears of take-overs(REF5.) the big retailer are trying to fight back with mega-store openings(REF6.) in-store sales teams returning to individual-based commission earning and capturing the vispol’s with the Dixons internet store (it’s the same company as currys, that delivers from the same warehouse, but can sell products a lot cheaper). But with huge increases with internet shopping (REF4.) are the high streets just buying time?
(REF1.) New Word Submissions Oxford Dictionaries
(REF2.) Bride buys her wedding dress for £2.50 in eBay
(REF3.) A Vispol Site