People enjoy the act of shopping. There is a definite social element as well as a visceral one and this is why some of the big supermarkets have designed beautiful shopping experiences. Sadly, the online world hasn't caught up.
Online stores need to make online shopping faster and more convenient with a web experience that, if not fun, is pleasing. Sites need to have better designs, and improved information and images. Product comparisons and recommendations, nutritional advice, automatic re-orders and better mobile phone integration all have a role.
If online stores can't match the physical experience of shopping, they need to focus on what the web is good at, and fast. Otherwise shopping online will continue to feel like a poor substitute.
Andy Budd, MD, Clearleft