9 Marketing tricks from retailers – to be aware of – or to copy!
Retailers are smart. They have done their research and know our weaknesses. They know how to make us use more and spend more. You can use these tactics in your own small business - or be sure to be aware of them the next time you go shopping!
1. Changing product locations
Department stores and supermarkets move around products to keep you moving around. So while you are looking for a specific product you might just find something else to buy.
2. Single click check out
Many on-line stores like Amazon use a one-click checkout process. While this can save time – customers don’t get a chance to reflect. Without having to enter billing, shipping, or credit card information, there’s no immediate obstacle to buying – no shopping cart abandonment!
3. Free shipping
Free shipping – but always with a catch. Usually free shipping comes with a minimum spend. That minimum spend is good for companies trying to improve their average sale – but not so for you if you only want products whose worth come in under the threshold. Most people will spend more to get something they perceive as ‘free’!
4. Internet ‘reminder ads’
Ever feel like you are being followed on-line? Reminder ads are those advertisements you get after you’ve shown an interest in a particular product category. For example if you've been researching for your next holiday be prepared to be inundated with ads for flights to appear in your feeds when you are on-line.
5. Bigger straws / bigger holes
Clubs and bars use bigger straws because you drink faster and end up buying more drinks. Manufacturers put bigger holes in items such as eye drops and larger openings in food and cosmetics so you use them more quickly and come back more often.
6. Food in bulk
2 for one offers, cheaper by the dozen - the logic is that buying in bulk saves you money. But if you don’t manage your groceries well you can end up throwing out your savings. As a society we throw out an obscene amount of fresh food - only buy what you need and can use.
7. Rinse and Repeat
If you read the instructions for shampoo, conditioner, skin care products chances are they are encouraging you into a routine to use more of their products. For best results… wash your hair twice, use a toner and moisturiser twice a day. Only your teeth require your attention twice a day.
8. Limited time offers
'Today only', 'limited to the first 100 customers', 'member only offer' 'EOFY sale' - these are tools to get us to buy now. The ‘scarcity principle’ suggests you are more inclined to purchase something if you think it might be gone tomorrow.
9. Free samples
Yum - doing the rounds of the markets tasting everything - getting a full belly but walking away empty handed - wrong. While you are under no obligation to buy sometimes we feel guilty if we don't. Psychologists call it the ‘rule for reciprocation’ - If someone does something nice for you, you’re more inclined to do something nice for them i.e. buy their goods (see food waste above!).
These are some great marketing tactics - but they do not take the place of giving your customers the products and services they want from you. All tricks aside - being transparent is the best way to build a loyal customer base.
Are there any strategies from the list you could use today?