Marketing: Why People Buy What They Buy

May 9, 2014

While consumers all seem to have their own needs when it comes to their buying decisions, it appears many of those buying needs are similar with most people. As a business, if you can understand what is motivating consumers to buy products, you can make the necessary adjustments with your marketing campaign and get more of that business. Understanding what drives a customer to make the purchase is so much more than understanding their initial needs. Here are just some of the reasons that influence the buying decisions of consumers across the globe.

The Basic Necessities: The most obvious of all the needs is going to be the basic ones. People need food and will buy when they are hungry. If you can carefully analyze your products and see if they fill a basic need, you can adjust your marketing strategy to focusing on that key element to drive more business to your offerings. Telling a customer you have the best product is one thing, showing them how they need your product is a completely different story.

Buying for Convenience: Many of your customers are looking for ways to make their lives easier. These consumers often buy products not because they need them, but because they think it will make their lives easier. Showing the customer that your product or service will save them time or eliminate added stress, shows them the product can make things easier for them. Infomercials have been selling kitchen knifes for decades, not because you need a new knife, but because they find a new way each year to show you how the knife will make your life easier in the kitchen.

Fear of Losing Out: One of the biggest reasons that many people buy on impulse is scarcity. They simply fear that they may lose out on the deal of the day, and take advantage to act when prompted. This is why several infomercials and shopping channels all have clocks with times telling consumers how much time is left for this amazing deal. Buyers perceive the offer as limited and think they will not be able to get it in the future, and simply make that purchase often on autopilot.

Lower Pricing: Consumers who do not make that immediate purchase of an item or service they want, put that in the memory bank where they never forget. It doesn't register again until they are shopping and see the item again at a significantly lower price. The bells go off in the head reminding them they wanted this item, and now with the lower price it must be time to buy.

Added Value: A consumer is more likely to buy something when they feel and emotional attachment to it. Many buying decisions are made when a person thinks that the value of that product far exceeds the price they are willing to spend. Even though they do not need the item, the value is telling them that this deal really is too good to pass on. Supermarkets have been taking advantage of this buying habit for decades by placing items they want to move quickly either at the end of the aisle or near the register. Even though the shopper does not need the item, if they see that the value is there, it winds up in the shopping cart every time.

Importance of Branding: Branding is another way of saying name recognition. This plays an enormous role in the buying decisions consumers make. Consumers are making purchases today simply based on the name of the manufacturer. If a consumer has a personal computer made by Dell, and they have had seven years of exception service from the product and the customer service, they associate only pleasure to that brand name. This why the next time they are shopping for a product they have no experience with like a printer or a laptop, they will more than likely by the Dell brand simply based on how they feel about the brand. Brand familiarity can play a significant role in the buying decisions of consumers.


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