Posted on Tuesday, September 8th, 2015 at 7:00 am
You went shopping because you had some coupons, or because the store was having a sale. After you were all finished shopping you realized that you ended up spending much more than you intended to. How does that happen? There are some tricks that stores use that can cause people to spend more money than they planned on spending.
Really Large Shopping Carts
For whatever reason, people have a tendency to want to fill up their shopping cart while they are buying groceries. Stores that give shoppers really large shopping carts know that this can make a customer unintentionally spend more money than she planned.
Visually, it looks like the same amount of groceries as when you shopped at a different store that had smaller carts. In reality, you’ve got a lot more products in that cart than you realized. The way to avoid this trick is to use a basket instead of a cart (or to resist the urge to fill up a shopping cart).
Have you ever wondered why so many stores play Christmas music through their speakers? The reason has to do with nostalgia. The Christmas music makes people happy and reminds them of their childhood. People who enjoy the music they are hearing in a store are likely to stick around for longer than they planned. Naturally, while you are in the store, you just might find more things that you want to buy.
Real Simple notes that some stores include “soundscapes” which have things like sounds of soda fizzing or a steak sizzling hiding in the music. Suddenly, you have the urge to have steak for dinner and a desire for the pack of soda that is on display. One way to avoid this trick is put in your earbuds and listen to music you selected for yourself while you shop.
How could a free sample make someone spend more money? This trick is one that works slowly. You stop for a free sample of sausage, or tea, or whatever is being handed out. Let’s say that you liked it. Your stomach wants more than that little tidbit, and your metabolism might think it is dinner time.
People who are hungry tend to spend more on groceries than people who are full. Everything looks good when you are starving! That free sample influences shoppers to spend more than they planned. It also makes at least some of them buy the food that they got a free sample of – even though they had no intentions of buying it when they walked in.
There are two things you can do to avoid this trick. First, don’t go shopping while you are hungry. Eat lunch, or dinner, first. Second, do not accept the free sample.