Loot is one of South Africa’s oldest online shopping destinations.
Online Retailer Loot.co.za first went online in 2003 making it on of the countries oldest online shopping portals. This longevity has made Loot, which is based in Cape Town, one of the top 5 online stores in South Africa.
Despite this head start, Loot is not nearly as popular as the market leader, South Africa’s favourite eCommerce site for 2015, Takealot. The reason for this is not always clear as Loot, Takealot and Wantitall (all with Cape Town bases) cover a lot of the same ground in very similar ways.
Loot has a catalog of over 10 million products comprising books, DVD’s, Blu-Ray, games, music, computers, electronics, toys, baby, wine, kitchen and home, stationery and office, arts and crafts and outdoor.
The site has an old-school e-commerce look with big “add to cart” buttons and text links that reminds me a bit of BidorBuy. There are plenty of ways to filter the listing to find exactly what you want so a big thumbs up for that.
Prices at Loot seem in the mid-range. By this I mean that they are no more expensive than most online stores. That makes it attractive to make this a first stop when pricing items.
The registration link is hidden as text at the top of the page and I find this very irritating. It seems to suggest that the philosophy of their sales funnel is to route you to the registration through the shopping cart. In my thinking this is a subtle hint to only register if you want to buy something.
Registration is simple, just a few basics and the option to receive the newsletter or not. There is a confirmation email and you need to click a link to validate your email address. At registration there is also a second page where you can add details like your address but you can also add that in your account profile at a later stage.
There is no sign-up incentive but they do have a referral scheme where you can earn a R50 voucher for each new buying customer that you refer. The custom link you need to promote and claim this is sent to you in the confirmation email. They also have various gift voucher options if you are looking for a gift but don’t know what.
The order system is the usual cart with wishlist and checkout. What is great about Loot’s system is that the price, delivery address and courier options are all displayed on one page as soon as you click on “Proceed to Checkout”. There is a separate page for payments.
Payment is by VISA and Mastercard debit and credit cards, EFT, Diners Club, American Express, Discovery and even direct deposit.
Loot promises free courier delivery anywhere in South Africa with orders of R250 or more with no weight restrictions, although there are T&C’s. You can also opt for normal postal delivery, overnight counter to counter postal delivery or if you are in Cape Town you can collect.
Most items purchased on Loot.co.za can be returned for a full refund. Non-returnable items are shown as “Non Returnable” on the “Delivery” page displayed at checkout. You have 21 days to return items and the original delivery charge and the cost for returning the parcel is at your expense.
Loot takes customer service very seriously and has good reviews on hellopeter.co.za. The main complaints logged relate to not having stock and delivery delays. This is fairly standard for online stores You can contact Loot customer service by phone at 0861 69-5668 by fax 021 701-8218 or by email: email@example.com. Their office hours are 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday and any e-mails sent outside of these hours will only get attention on the next working day.
Loot is a decent online store and with it’s early start in this sector, it is hard to see why it was overtaken by other stores. The site interface is basic but easy to use, they have a huge selection, they don’t make you jump through hoops, prices are fair and payment, delivery, returns and service is slightly above average for the industry. They even have a referral program and a dedicated affiliate program.