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Impulse Buying... When it's Smart and When it's Not

 
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couponqueen
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Joined: 14 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 9:21 am    Post subject: Impulse Buying... When it's Smart and When it's Not Reply with quote

Every store has been carefully designed to direct our actions and our purchases. Being aware of these environmental motivators can reduce your impulse purchases and help you focus on items you want and new products you'd like to try.

When stores place complementary items together -- like beer and pretzels or baby food and diapers -- they are playing on shoppers' impulsiveness. This integrated merchandising makes items convenient for shoppers to find and gets them to spend more. Who can resist the shortcake and whipped cream nuzzling the strawberries on your list? What about the end-of-aisle displays that combine pasta, sauce and grated cheese?

If the items are on your shopping list -- or are big savings -- go for it! Otherwise, you might be the next unwilling victim of impulse shopping.

Impulse items may be new products, samples, well-displayed items or products at unexpectedly low prices. They also entice us with strong aromas (the bakery department) or announcements over the loudspeaker (the "blue light" special). Marketers get us when our senses send messages to our brains that say, "I want this!" or "I can't live without that!"

Should we always resist the urge? No way! Discovering new products makes supermarket shopping fun. Be smart about it, though. Learn what kinds of items are considered impulsive, decide if you really want or need them, and cushion your grocery budget to pay for them. I permit myself three impulse items.

Before you buy an impulse item, ask yourself these simple questions:

• "Will I use this product?"
• "Does this product replace a product already in my cart?" If it does, compare them side-by-side and then choose.
• "Why am I buying this?" Did you have a bad day? Are you hungry? Do you deserve a reward? Be honest.
• "Do I really financially need or want this?" If the answer is yes, enjoy.
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