Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Stimulate Quick Thinking for Impulse Sales

You’ll frequently see impulse buy items in the areas where customers are waiting to pay for their purchases. Operators of those stores may assume that, when waiting, consumers have more of an opportunity to reflect on buying these items than when the consumers are moving through the aisles to gather their purchases.
     This assumption proves to be misleading, say researchers at Zeppelin University, University of Vienna, and University of St. Gallen. They collected functional magnetic resonance imaging responses to product packages in participants who, as a group, reflected a range of impulse-buying tendencies.
  • Package design substantially influenced how likely it was that an item would be purchased on impulse. 
  • When looking at the packages, those people most likely to buy on impulse showed high activity in brain regions associated with impulsive decisions for all areas of life. 
  • The impulsive shoppers showed low activity in brain areas associated with reflective thinking. 
  • Package designs which shoppers found to be attractive produced less evidence of reflection. So did package designs which shoppers found to be unattractive. 
     To make more impulse sales, stock package designs and use signage which stimulate quick thinking. Bright colors. Animation. Uniform sizes and prices. Easy access to the items. Waiting times long enough for shoppers to grab items, but not so long as to encourage reflection.
     Researchers at University of Pennsylvania, Instituto de Empresa Business School in Spain, and Tilburg University in the Netherlands have added to the tactics for increasing unplanned buying by repeat customers who have come into your store with shopping objectives:
  • Encourage customers to set general shopping objectives instead of specific ones for their next visits. Do this in your advertising and in talking with customers (“Please keep in mind that we’re your store for every sort of party planning”). For shopping with general objectives, the jump in impulse purchases was about twice as much as for trips with specific objectives. 
  • Maximize your within-store convenience for fulfilling whatever objectives the shopper has set (“I can get almost everything right at that store”). In the research, this sort of store-specific convenience lifted the amount of unplanned buying more than 10%. 
  • Avoid unnecessary impressions of multi-store convenience (“After I finish shopping at this store, it would be easy to also shop at other stores”). When your customers decide to stop at a few different stores, they become less likely to make unplanned purchases at your store. 
Click below for more: 
Shelve Old Ideas About Shelf Space Allocation 
Forestall Mobile Blinders 
Increase Repeat Customers’ Unplanned Buying 
Envision Parity Pricing

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