Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping – Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond

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Senteo Rating 4.0
04/27/23
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Author:Paco Underhill
04/27/23
views 18657
comments0
Author:Paco Underhill
DIAMOND
RATING
Senteo Rating 4.0

Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping – Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond
Paco Underhill, Simon and Schuster, 2009
Senteo’s Review information

This updated edition adds a section of the Internet and global consumer, seeking to apply the original version to the modern age. Paco Underhill, a retail professional and founder of a behavior consumer research and consulting firm Envirosell, provides a behavioral psychology perspective on shopping and lessons for success in retail.

The first four sections cover this material, providing fascinating insights and lessons on retail and buying behavior of different age groups, family configurations, genders and different international settings. For example, the author provides interesting examples of some of the more innovative retail environments to be found in emerging markets, such as indoor skiing at a mall in Dubai or a store in Brazil that provides its customers with personal shoppers. The author’s methodology is based on observations of consumer behavior in retail settings, providing justification or refute to both new and established approaches.

The book contains extensive conclusions made through observations of the shoppers, providing insights into what works and what doesn’t – some of them obvious, some eye-opening. For example, the commonly accepted practice of retailers providing signage and offers at the entry point of a store, which behavior studies show few shoppers notice when entering, as opposed to farther back in the store. The many examples of how unpredictably shoppers can act and respond provides great reading for retail professionals as well as those interested in consumer behavior.

There is some disconnect at times between the research findings and the author’s framework or methodology for applying to your business. The book at times seems an anthropological study of shoppers, while providing little in the way of a system of measurement or application for the retail professional. Also, the chapter on the Internet presents it as an appendage to the retail store setting, rather than applying more scientific research to this new medium on its own merits, as is commonly done with the bricks and mortar environment.

Revolutionary retail guru Paco Underhill is back with a completely revised edition of his classic, witty bestselling book on our ever-evolving consumer culture — full of fresh observations and important lessons from the cutting edge of retail, which is taking place in the world’s emerging markets. New material includes:

  • The latest trends in online retail — what retailers are doing right and what they’re doing wrong — and how nearly every Internet retailer from iTunes to Amazon can drastically improve how it serves its customers.
  • A guided tour of the most innovative stores, malls and retail environments around the world — almost all of which are springing up in countries where prosperity is new. An enormous indoor ski slope attracts shoppers to a mall in Dubai; an uber luxurious Sao Paolo department store provides its customers with personal shoppers; a mall in South Africa has a wave pool for surfing.

The new Why We Buy is an essential guide — it offers advice on how to keep your changing customers and entice new and eager ones.

Many of the behavioral research findings of this book are directly relevant and applicable to the retail environment, to fine-tune the retail offering and score quick sales gains. The author’s years of experience in this field provide interesting findings for the retail professional, consultant or student of marketing. In what sometimes seems obvious when presented by the findings, this book underscores how often these concepts can be overlooked by even the experienced retail manager.

If you are interested in more biological and neuroscientific reasons why we buy, check out The Buying Brain (Senteo review).

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This book provides behavioral research findings through the author’s years of observations as well as examples. It does not contain any method for tactical applications, rather is a collection of findings.

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    Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping – Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond
    Paco Underhill, Simon and Schuster, 2009
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