Back to school shopping during the pandemic


It’s that time again, back to school shopping! But with the pandemic, things are a bit different this year.

It’s not just about how we’re shopping, but what we’re shopping for.

“It’s a big year for online shopping, lots of people are avoiding the stores. While in the past we may have been shopping for school supplies or backpacks or new outfit or pair of shoes. This year we’re seeing parents look at how to outfit their house for remote learning,” said Omri Traub, Founder, and CEO of Popcart Price Comparison.

That includes laptops, monitors, webcams, and other computer accessories.

With more kids doing virtual learning, he says electronics are big sellers, and that’s not all.

“Cleaning supplies, Clorox wipes, and hand sanitizer became very hard to find during the pandemic. We at Popcart are sitting on a near-realtime feed of where these items are available and when they’re going back in stock.”

All these items can really add up. In fact, according to the National Retail Federation, families could spend a record amount on back-to-school shopping this year. For some, more than $1,000.

Traub warns while shopping online be on the lookout for not just price gouging but surge pricing.

“A lot of people don’t realize half the items sold on amazon online are actually sold by a third party seller. Sometimes it’s a reputable store or a person like you or me looking to make a quick buck. The prices on Amazon can change every hour or every minute and they’re changing to meet the demand so naturally when something is in short supply like Clorox wipes or web camera the prices are going to go up and we call this surge pricing.”

Traub tells me his website has become very popular during this pandemic. So many people have turned to online shopping and with tight budgets, no matter how you do it, finding the best prices will be key this year.

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