The Ultimate Online Shopping Guide In Malaysia - Chapter 9

Important Terms You Need To Know For Online Shopping

online shopping terms meaningWhile online shopping is usually done through established e-commerce platforms, you may occasionally come across certain acronyms or terms that don’t seem to mean anything. This is even more common if you’re dealing with a seller you found on social media or dealing with pre-owned items (like those on eBay or Carousell).

Product information

The following terms deal with the condition of the product. It’s generally an indicator of what you can expect in terms of possible damage or if there may be defects.

BIBBack in box. The item has been removed from the packaging. Usually done by the seller to make sure that the contents are intact with no damage or if it is a second-hand item that has been returned to its packaging.
NIBNew in box. The item is brand new and has not been removed from the box. However, it might no longer be shrink-wrapped.
MISBMint in sealed box. This is a new item that has never been removed or handled by anyone. The box is also still sealed with either shrink-wrap or the original security stickers.
RefurbishedThe item is used and has been sent for repair. Usually applied to spare parts, but many sellers also specialise in refurbished electronics and appliances.

Social media

This next section deals with terms normally used to indicate intent. Usually whether someone is looking to buy, sell, or just engage in barter trade.

WTSWant To Sell. The person is looking to sell something
WTBWant To Buy. The person is looking to buy the item in question
WTTWant To Trade. The person is looking to trade the item for something. Depending on the seller, the trade could invite offers or ask for something specific.
BumpA post made to bring attention back to the item on sale. Originally applied in online forums that allow trading but has now made its way to social media.


Auction sites like eBay introduce another level of complexity when it comes to online shopping. Some items require you to place bids, others do not. Additionally, some items may not even be sold if the bidding is too low.

BidDeclaring the amount that you are willing to pay for the item. You do not have to pay anything unless you have the highest bid when the auction ends.
Reserve priceThe minimum bid required for something to be sold. Not everything will have a reserve price.
Buy it nowSome sellers will set a price at which you can just buy the item on auction. If you are not comfortable with the price, you can still enter a lower amount as a bid.
SnipingSome buyers will wait until the last possible moment to enter a bid to ensure that they win an online auction.


Bots fall within their own special category. They are special mini-programmes (or more accurately known as scripts). These programmes are set to buy specific things from specific stores at very specific times – and they are able to click through the online transaction faster than any human.

They are generally used at product launches or during sales to ensure that the person doesn’t miss out. However, they are also very commonly used by scalpers to buy up large quantities of product for resale at a higher price.

Bargain hunting

Knowing these terms can help you determine if you should buy something, or how to go about looking for rare collectors’ items. It’s a language spoken by those who spend a lot of time buying, selling, and trading on the internet – and is extremely useful if you’re out looking for the lowest possible prices.

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