Online Shopping: Security Concerns vs. Convenience


This study is based on the data obtained through a survey that involved 23 volunteering participants (13 males and 10 females). The age of the people who completed the questionnaire ranged from 18 to 35, so the research reveals the views of young adults and adults. The participants were rather active online shoppers as almost 35% reported buying through the Internet once or twice a month while 17.39% bought online six or more times per month. Remarkably, almost 22% of respondents did not buy anything online. As far as purchasing preferences and experiences, the participants tended to place the highest value on such factors as delivery time (65.22%), information privacy (60.87%), security (65.22%), good descriptions of goods and services (almost 40%). Price is rather relevant as slightly over 26% of the participants identified it as one of the benefits of online shopping. Other benefits included no space limits (almost 35%) and easier payment options (almost 22%).

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Possible barriers to online shopping were also explored. Such product risks as (size, shape, and other features) were taken seriously as 39.13% worried about the matter, and 30.43% were strongly worried. The respondents revealed similar views on the financial risks associated with online shopping. According to this study findings, 36.36% strongly worried and 31.82% reported being worried about this issue. The participants’ security and privacy concerns are quite significant since 34.78% of the respondents were strongly worried about this aspect. At the same time, almost 44% were neutral to the possibility of their personal data leakage.


This study aims at answering the following research question: Why are people still keen on online shopping despite the perceived security risks? The results described above indicate that online shoppers have quite significant fears concerning privacy and security but still choose online purchasing due to its convenience. As mentioned above, the majority of participants place a high value on the space limits absence associated with online shopping. These findings are consistent with the results reported by Yang, Zhao, and Wan (2010) who identified several highly-valued benefits of web-based buying. These advantages were the absence of space and temporal boundaries, convenient buying experiences, detailed information about products, and lower prices as compared to purchasing from shops. Arshad, Zafar, Fatima, Khan (2015) also explored the relationship between perceived security risks and buying behavior. According to Arshad et al. (2015), perceived security risks have adverse effects on customers’ loyalty and shopping behavior, but they are not the critical factor. Therefore, people tend to put convenience to the fore and pay less attention to security and privacy risks.

It is noteworthy that the present-day e-commerce is characterized by a shift to a higher customization of the provided services. In simple terms, online shoppers do not have to spend hours searching for the necessary product as retailers send lists of products that might be interesting to this customer (Lee et al., 2015). This customer-centered approach makes shopping experiences even more pleasant as buyers can save their time as well as money. At the same time, this focus on personalized service provision can have an effect on people’s opinions concerning security and privacy. Customers understand that their previous shopping habits are under analysis, and their personal data are utilized for marketing purposes. This understanding makes people more conscious about their data privacy and security.

Another influential factor that can be the reason for people’s increasing use of e-commerce is growing trust. Approximately half of the participants were active online shoppers although they had concerns linked to security matters. Arshad et al. (2015) argued that vast positive experience related to online shopping had a positive impact on customers’ loyalty and buying behaviors. Hsieh and Tsao (2014) claimed that people were to shop online if they had a positive experience previously. Changchit, Cutshall, and Lee (2014) drew similar conclusions when they compared Taiwanese and American online shoppers. The results of the study implemented by Lee, Lee, Lee, and Park (2015) indicate that positive online shopping experiences positively correlated with customers’ loyalty and had a positive impact on their buying behavior. The findings of this study are consistent with such conclusions. It is possible to assume that e-commerce is becoming common or rather an integral part of people’s lives, which makes people more trustful and concentrated on the benefits rather than shortcoming of online shopping. Since customers do not face security and privacy issues very often, they tend to pay less attention to this aspect.

Although the findings can seem conflicting as the participants have fears but still shop online, this trend can be explained by examining customers’ traits. People’s age and certain characteristic features of the generation can have an impact on their shopping behavior (Ordun, 2015). The present study involves the representatives of the so-called Generation Y. These individuals value innovation and technology, as well as convenience and pleasant experiences, which makes e-commerce an obvious choice (Ordun, 2015). Although some fears concerning security and privacy exist, young adults and adults believe that these issues will be overcome soon, so the advantages of online shopping outweigh the associated downsides.

Lee et al. (2015) also argue that people’s traits have a considerable effect on their online shopping behavior. The researchers identified several groups of shoppers including those who were ready to share personal information and had certain security concerns, and those who were reluctant to share data and had security-related fears (Lee et al., 2015). The findings of this study are consistent with the assumptions made by Lee et al. (2015) as a third of the respondents were afraid of data loss. Nevertheless, these concerns seemed to have a limited effect on the participants’ decision to buy online since only a fifth of the respondents never buy from online shops. The focus on personal features can be the further step in terms of the inquiry into the relationship between online shoppers’ security concerns and their shopping behavior.

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It is possible to note that although customers have fears concerning their data privacy and security, they still shop online. The primary reason for customers’ loyalty is the convenience of online shopping. People can save time and money when buying from online shops. Furthermore, the absence or irrelevance of their negative shopping experiences also contributes to the development of trust. Customers are almost sure that technology ensures the safety of their information. Finally, personal features have a considerable impact on people’s shopping behavior. The participants were mainly the representatives of Generation Y that values innovation, technology, convenience, and pleasant emotions. Further steps aimed at exploring the relationships between online shopping and perceived security concerns may be the analysis of the impact personal features have on customers’ shopping patterns.


Arshad, A., Zafar, M., Fatima, I., & Khan, S. K. (2015). The impact of perceived risk on online buying behavior. International Journal of New Technology and Research (IJNTR), 1(8), 13-18.

Changchit, C., Cutshall, R., & Lee, T. R. (2014). Shopping preference: A comparative study of American and Taiwanese perceptions. Journal of International Technology and Information Management, 23(1), 83-104.

Hsieh, M. T., & Tsao, W. C. (2014). Reducing perceived online shopping risk to enhance loyalty: A website quality perspective. Journal of Risk Research, 17(2), 241-261. Web.

Lee, S., Lee, Y., Lee, J. I., & Park, J. (2015). Personalized e-services: Consumer privacy concern and information sharing. Social Behavior and Personality: An International Journal, 43(5), 729-740. Web.

Ordun, G. (2015). Millennial (Gen Y) consumer behavior, their shopping preferences and perceptual maps associated with brand loyalty. Canadian Social Science, 11(4), 40-55. Web.

Yang, J. X., Zhao, H. X., & Wan, J. (2010). Research on the advantages and disadvantages of online shopping and corresponding strategies. 2010 International Conference on E-Product E-Service and E-Entertainment (pp. 1-5). Henan, China: IEEE.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, June 27). Online Shopping: Security Concerns vs. Convenience. Retrieved from

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StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Online Shopping: Security Concerns vs. Convenience'. 27 June.

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