By: Laura Walton AFC®
Retailers use this strategy and others day in and day out to motivate us to buy their goods. The better we understand how we’re being marketed to, the better our buying decisions are. We’re particularly vulnerable around the holidays when we’re short of time and want to be generous.
With only 43 shopping days to Black Friday and 46 to Cyber Monday and just another 27 until Christmas, now is a great time to review these tactics. And, remember, generosity is better measured by thoughtfulness than money.
Buying barrier: Tea candles were the first things I saw once inside the doors of Ikea last Christmas season. Why? Because they’re inexpensive and lots of people use them. So? It helps to break the buying barrier! It’s an easy decision to pick up the inexpensive item you can always use and, once you make that decision to buy something, it’s easier to decide to buy that second item, likely a more expensive one.
Pricing: Prices ending with a 9 ($19.99) signals us that the product is priced competitively, maybe even discounted, better yet, cheap…it’s not what you spend, it’s what you save!
Offers: Getting “33% more free” sounds better than getting “33% off” but, when you do the math, it’s not. If a one pound box of See’s chocolates costs $18, “33% more free” costs 84 cents an ounce while “33% off” costs only 74 cents an ounce.
Staging: When Williams-Sonoma added a $429 breadmaker next to their $279 model, sales of the cheaper model doubled…again, it’s not what you spend, it’s what you save!
Highlighting: Literally lighting up a display. Restaurants highlight their most profitable menu items with pictures or boxes, retailers with special displays.
Free Shipping: Shopping online or by catalogue? Retailers have learned that by offering “free shipping”, 90% of us will increase our orders!
Black Friday: Last but not least, we’ve come to expect the best deals on Black Friday! Turns out that’s not always the case. Retail watchers caution that many items are cheaper at other times of the year.