Many factors influence purchasing decisions, and in today’s competitive retail landscape, you must take advantage of knowing — and capitalizing on — those that can have a positive impact on sales. When you know what motivates people to make a purchase, you can tailor your retail presence to appeal to these motivations, boosting your sales and positioning your brand at the forefront of consumers’ minds.
Understanding how marketing influences consumer behavior is essential to keeping the spotlight on your brand in a retail environment. What are the top factors that influence purchasing decisions for consumers today? Read on…
Factors Influencing Consumer Behavior
The consumer buying process is complex, and many factors can change consumers’ minds from when they walk into a store until they reach the checkout counter.
When you are deciding what you should buy, psychological factors may influence your choice. Take a look at the following elements that might influence customer purchases:
- Motivation: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs outlines five levels of human needs, ranging from basics like food and shelter to the desire to become the best version of yourself. Our basic needs are the most important. They have the power to motivate consumers.
- Perception: Your reputation is everything. Literally. The willingness to pay more for a brand is linked to people’s perceptions of your reputation. Online reviews and word-of-mouth bashing, combined with the power of social sharing, can do a brand in. Be kind, be compassionate, be valuable. Having a reputation of being a brand that cares will win every time.
- Learning: People are attracted to information before they buy something, and providing it creates trust and encourages purchases. The better the experience of interacting with your brand, including how your products are presented, the better the chances consumers will buy from you again.
- Ambiance: Having a great store ambiance can be a huge opportunity for retailers. It allows you to set the scene for your shoppers’ experience while they physically browse your retail space. It’s proven that people buy more when they “feel good.” Create that space for them!
Store displays and presentation of products are a way you can stand out against the competition. Adding on to the idea of ambiance, how you display your products can have a real impact on sales. Shoppers like creative, neat and organized, easy-to-find items, and displays can help you achieve all of this. Consider doing something eye-catching, like color-coordinating products to capture attention.
We’ve all bought something based on a favorable review or peer recommendation. Humans need to feel a sense of belonging, and any product that increases social standing is worth purchasing in buyers’ eyes. Some of the most critical social factors include:
- Family: If a retail display gets the whole family on board, you have a better chance of encouraging purchases.
- Reference groups: We tend to gravitate toward people with similar views and opinions. Think of high school kids all listening to the same music and wearing the same clothing brands. Make your retail displays appealing to groups and boost the chance of converting them.
- Treatment of customers: Treatment of customers is a no-brainer but worth mentioning as a gentle reminder. Today’s consumers are finicky, and with a saturated market where they can have virtually anything they want with the click of a button, they all but demand special treatment when shopping in a retail environment. It only takes one bad encounter to lose a customer, and referral loss (when a disgruntled customer bashes your brand) can hurt you, too!
- Packaging: Premium packaging is important. Whether you’re shipping a product or handing a branded custom bag across the counter, don’t miss out on the prime real estate packaging offers. Branding your packaging with your logo is smart, too, as some recent studies suggest up to 85% of consumers prefer reusable packaging.
- Online presence: Staying active online is nonnegotiable these days. We don’t know how to make it any clearer than that. You. Simply. Must. Be. Online. And you don’t need a huge several-hundred-page website either! But, keep in mind you should have a website AND social channels (and be active and engaging on them) for a truly omnipresent strategy.
Tradition and culture shape our preferences. If you grew up in a family that eats a roast meal every Sunday, you’ll probably do the same instead of choosing a Thai green curry. Some cultural factors to consider regarding purchasing behaviors include:
- Subcultures: These are smaller groups stemming from the same overarching culture. These groups often have more in common and exert influence over one another. Appealing to a specific subculture is often more effective, like tailoring your message to a specific market segment.
- Lifestyle: While lifestyle is linked to income, occupation and education also play roles. Retail purchasing decisions are often based on whether a specific product appeals to someone’s lifestyle, like purchasing high-end products because they fit your lifestyle.
Economic factors determine whether consumers have the means to purchase certain products. Some economic considerations include:
- Price: Cost is always an important factor for consumers. That said, cheaper isn’t always better (or necessary!). By taking heed of some of our previous factors mentioned above (ambiance, display aesthetics and packaging being the most impactful), you may be able to effectively charge a higher cost. Be competitive, but don’t sell yourself short.
- Income: Consumer income directly determines whether they have the means to buy something. The higher the personal income, the more freedom a consumer has to make purchase decisions. Lower-income consumers focus on things they need, which is important for presentation in a retail setting.
- Return policy: While this isn’t often a huge priority for every brand, identifying and making known your return policy can be beneficial for several reasons, including consistency, transparency and helping to build customer loyalty.
Each individual has a list of traits that influence what they choose to buy. Understanding the type of person you’re targeting is essential in a retail setting, so you can draw the attention of the people who want or need your product. Some factors that can influence how consumers decide what to buy include:
- Age: Our age dictates the products we want and need. A teenage girl is less likely to buy anti-aging products than a mom of two, for example.
- Occupation: Many people make purchases that align with their occupation, and appealing to them on this basis is a powerful marketing tool.
- Values: Sustainability and eco-friendly preferences are excellent examples of how consumer values influence purchase decisions — 65% of consumers want to buy sustainable products. Creating a sustainable retail display will automatically grab their attention, presenting them with a brand that fits their values.
Put the Spotlight on Your Brand With Creative Displays Now!
It can be tough to build a brand in today’s retail world. But for as many challenges, we guarantee you have just as many opportunities to build a successful brand that delights your customers and can withstand the test of time.
To find out more about how Creative Displays Now can help you create displays that sell, call us at 1-855-284-6922 or reach out online today! We’ve been in the business for over 60 years, and we know what works. We’re ready (and excited) to help you with all your display needs.