Ask yourself: when you want to buy a pair of shoes, what is the first thing you do?
Chances are, you’ll start browsing for your favourite colour, your favourite brand. You’ll choose a few models you like, maybe order them online. Or first go to the shop to try them on and then, maybe browse some more to find the best prices. And finally, you buy a pair of shoes.
For 87% of all shoppers, the buying process involves researching online before doing a purchase in a physical store.
As shoppers, we have learned to be wary of what we purchase and how. We research information and find the ‘best’ products for ourselves and with a heavy dependency on technology, we can now do this wherever we have access to WiFi or data. Six out of 10 mobile users begin their shopping journey on one device, but continue or finish on a different one. Mobile devices provide us convenient access to any form of content, which leads us to incorporate mobile-shopping into our habitual routines.
Habitual routines can actually benefit retailers, especially for those in a competitive environment. Two positive things happen: one, the habitual interactions provide consumers convenience, reinforcing their experiential state of being in a relationship with a brand, which leads to loyalty. Two, the dependency on their habitual routines will mean that consumers are relying on their automatic thinking and will therefore, spend less time considering alterative brands.
Each and every day, package designers, retail planners and online UX experts all face the same question: should you follow customer expectations, or should you break them?
Many experts propose that stores, products and websites should strictly adhere to what the customer expects. This would increase the fluency of the customer experience, leading to increased feelings of positive emotion and – ultimately – purchase behavior.
Nonetheless, there are countless examples of successful concepts that had their rule-breaking philosophy to thank for. From Dell cutting out the middle man in an industry where no one believed people would buy any place else than the retail store, to Craigslist proving discarding many emblematic UX and design rules.
Generally, when visiting a supermarket, you don't want to waste your precious time by searching for the products you're looking for. In order to help us making decisions, our brains have a few biases in their way of seeing things.
We all know that marketeers are trying to get their products in the centre of a display, and that’s for a very good reason. However, new research shows that there’s another bias that influences our way of checking products. Apparently, our visual attention tends to automatically focus to the upper part of a display when we’re looking for a light-coloured product, and to the bottom for a dark coloured product.
Every day, we make decisions between multiple choices and alternatives. After a while, our brains find shortcuts to help us make decisions faster, in a more “efficient” way. This is called fast-thinking, according to Daniel Kahneman, a behavioral economist and author of Thinking Fast and Slow. When we have more time to decide, we begin to refer to our memories and past experiences to make a final choice; this is considered slow-thinking.