Inside The Mind of the Shopper: The Science of Retailing

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Senteo Rating 4.0
04/27/23
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Author:Herb Sorensen
04/27/23
views 11007
comments0
Author:Herb Sorensen
DIAMOND
RATING
Senteo Rating 4.0

Inside The Mind of the Shopper: The Science of Retailing
Herb Sorensen, Prentice Hall, 2009
Senteo’s Review information

This book provides a behavioral psychology perspective on shopping and lessons for success in retail. The author has spent 40 years working with Fortune 500 retailers and consumer packaged goods companies developing his methodology, studying shopper behavior, motivations and perceptions.

Herb Sorensen developed a patented shopper-tracking device called PathTracker to observe shopper behavior and provide a more quantitative, scientific approach. The book begins by explaining that 80% of shopper time is wasted, citing “three moments of truth” or opportunities to sell something (reach, stopping/holding, and closing). In each, he explains the sensory and eye-tracking methods used to track and influence shoppers, as well as “the three currencies of shopping” – money, time, and angst.

The author cites five store designs and how they can be used to affect shopper behavior, and utilizes some unique analyses such as “vital quadrant” which plots product shopping power and closing power and ranks products. He goes on to explain metrics for shopping behavior, with a complete flow and adjacency analysis for stores.

The author backs his behavioral data with many tables, graphs, illustrations,  and data analysis. In the field of behavioral psychology, the use of PathTracker sets this author apart from others (see Paco Underhill’s more anecdotal work, Why We Buy”, reviewed by Senteo). There are good examples of in-store navigation patterns, explaining where shoppers go and what they do, for example, why shoppers gravitate to open spaces and how products hardly ever dictate shopper traffic. The book is well-organized, with each chapter providing examples of the authors methodology for measuring, analyzing and applications. The second section provides thought-provoking interviews with experts in the field from Unilever, The Wharton School, and others.

The book could use more examples of how to apply the findings in a more structured, methodological way.

What do you really do when you shop? The answers are fascinating and, for retailers, they’re cash in the bank. In Inside the Mind of the Shopper: The Science of Retailing, world-renowned retail consultant Dr. Herb Sorensen, Ph.D. uncovers the truth about the retail shopper and rips away the myths and mistakes that lead retailers to miss their greatest opportunities. Every year, says Sorensen, shoppers will spend a quadrillion seconds in supermarkets and they’ll waste 80% of that time. Sorensen analyzes consumer behavior–how shoppers make buying decisions as they move through supermarkets and other retail stores–and presents powerful, tested strategies for designing more effective stores, improving merchandising, and driving double-digit sales increases. He identifies simple interventions that can have dramatic sales effects, and shows why many common strategies simply don’t work. You’ll learn how to appeal to the “quick trip” shopper; make the most of all three “moments of truth”; understand consumers’ powerful in-store migration patterns; improve collaboration between manufacturers and retailers; learn the lessons of Stew Leonard’s and other innovators; and much more. Then, in Part II, Sorensen presents revealing interviews with several leading in-store retail experts, including crucial insights on using technology and retailing to multicultural communities.

With up to 80% of final purchasing decisions being made in-store, this is a good read for any marketer or retailer seeking to understand buyers’ behavior. It is an ideal fit for retailers, senior management, marketers, and consumer goods producers. If you want to delve deeper into buyers’ psychology on the basis, see The Buying Brain(Senteo review).

 

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This book is primarily research-based with some methodology included.

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    Inside The Mind of the Shopper: The Science of Retailing
    Herb Sorensen, Prentice Hall, 2009
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