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It was just 25 years ago - when PCs of that time still creaked and scratched loudly when you wanted to start a programme from a floppy disk and graphic interfaces, if they existed at all, still consisted of 16 colours. Windows did not yet exist, so you could only navigate using the keyboard. Not surprisingly, the first online shop platforms were only able to establish themselves years later. We asked ourselves what e-commerce would have looked like 25 years ago. Take a fictitious journey back in time to the heyday of e-commerce in the late 1980s with Netensio .

Attention: Parts of this blog article are fictitious and may not be meant seriously! OXID Retro Design Startseite

A modern OXID Retro Shop would probably have looked something like this 25 years ago. Of course, you have to think away the article images, which would have been possible as ASCII character salad at best. But we don't mind, 25 years ago shop customers weren't quite as demanding as they are today. We would also like to neglect pure keyboard operation in this small simulation.

Navigation is realised via the dropdown menus, which were already very chic at the time, making it easier for the visitor to reach the menu items by simply "tabbing" and selecting them accordingly. This is another important advantage given the very small screen size and the correspondingly few lines available at the time.

The OXID shopping cart in 1989

In our retro OXID eShop example we pay attention to a uniform colour delimitation of text elements and control elements. The minimal design options of the time required the precise use of frames, dividing lines and the sparing use of colours (there were only 16 different ones to choose from). Even back then, many shop operators used coupon codes to inspire customers to buy their products. Entering a voucher coupon code was an integral part of Commandline shops back then!

Oxid Retro Design - Commandline Shop Warenkorb

A "OnePage - Checkout" was not even conceivable at that time, technologies such as AJAX had not yet been invented. Customers had to navigate through a multi-page checkout process, just like in today's online shops. Payment providers such as Paypal were also not yet on the market, so payment had to be made by credit card or bank transfer. At that time, not a word was said about data protection during the transfer of sensitive data between the customer and the online merchant - and it didn't have to be, there was neither SSL nor other really good encryption methods. So it's a good thing that we don't have to think about all these things when we are in 1989.

OXID item details in the late eighties

On the detail pages of our retro shop, customers could already select variants of products back then and add them to the

put them into the shopping cart. At that time, the main focus was probably still on the detailed item description. If you wanted to know something more detailed, you could write a message to the dealer's mailbox.

Oxid Commandline Shop - Detailansicht

Assuming that there were no image files at that time, the view of the article is not bad at all. Information about the stock, the delivery time, the price and the description of the item were sufficient to buy a product. If you had a print catalogue of the shop, you could easily view the corresponding item in the print catalogue and order it online. If this development had been the case, electronic customer service would probably have been well on its way back then.

Retro customer account in the Oldschool Shop

Of course, it was also possible at that time to create user accounts in the shop and to hide them behind a password so that only the corresponding customer could log in. In the customer account itself, you could change addresses, track orders and create wish lists. Even back then, it was possible, albeit somewhat limited, to assign articles to lists in order to make article comparisons on the basis of individual attributes.

Oxid Retro Design - Benutzerkonto im Shop

Fortunately, we are no longer in 1989 and have come so far technically that there are almost no limits to what is possible in software development. Not everything has become better and better, but fortunately not much worse either. For our part, we are looking forward to the comments on this article, now, in 10, 15 or even 20 years when we are retro again.

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