15 Sneaky Psychological Tricks That’ll Help You Spend Less Money While Shopping

Tips & tricks
3 years ago

We spend more than $5,000 annually on impulse buying. But we are not the only ones to blame, manufacturers and sellers study us carefully to trigger our desire to buy. However, there are very effective ways to withstand any temptations and keep growing your savings.

Bright Side decided to find out what the best strategies are to save money during shopping sessions. And now we can’t wait to share these golden tips with you. Take notes!

1. Put on your high heels.

According to a small study, having to be focused on keeping your balance while wearing high heels might have an impact on the money you spend. This way, consumers will be able to evaluate their options more carefully, and choose products with mid-range prices instead of those that are very expensive. Interestingly, going shopping after yoga or after riding on an escalator can have the same effect.

2. Keep new bills in your wallet.

Another study says that the physical appearance of money also influences our spending. People are more likely to give away those bills that look old, dirty, and worn out. Try to keep the new bills in your wallet, and deposit the rest into your bank account.

3. Procrastinating can be good.

Before clicking the “complete the order” button while shopping online, you can try to close the website and leave it for a few hours or overnight. It might happen that you will even forget about the items that you chose, which means you didn’t really need them. You can do exactly the same in a physical store by putting the item back and taking a short walk away from that store.

4. Avoid long interactions with sales staff.

Positive interactions with customers are one of the rules that is carefully followed by many retailers. The more sales associates interact with their customers, the longer they make them stay in their store, and the more likely that customers will buy more than they intended. Knowing this, you can now try to reduce these interactions to be as short as possible — or just don’t interact at all.

5. Try to leave your bank card at home sometimes.

One more study reveals that consumers are more likely to spend more money if they pay with their debit cards, than if they pay with cash. When we pay with cash, we see the amount of money we spend and hence it can be painful. However, paying with a card makes it harder to track your expenses.

6. Check out as a guest.

When shopping online, avoid registering a new account and having them save your bank account data. Saved information means that buying can be done in several clicks and hence trigger an impulse purchase. If you proceed with your purchase as a guest, you will need to enter your card number and other information, which means there is a chance you might get lazy, not want to go look for your card, and eventually avoid ordering.

7. Check the reviews on expensive items.

Buying expensive things on impulse and then regretting it might be very painful. To prevent this, you can try to check online and see what others are saying about the pricy thing you intend to buy. Sometimes you might find out that most of the other customers ended up being unhappy about it, so you probably shouldn’t spend your money on it either.

8. Suck on mints when entering a store.

Retailers use a special strategy called “scent marketing” to make the shopping experience more pleasant for their customers. They use scents like bergamot, vanilla, white tea, or bamboo to trigger them to spend more money. Mint-flavored candy or chewing gum can overwhelm the aromas around you and help you to not spend more than you intended.

9. Turn on your own music.

Another trick to make us spend more is to use pleasant sounds and songs in stores. This topic has been studied for a very long time, and it has been proven that the music’s tempo and genre influence the way we make purchase decisions. In order to not be tricked, you can put on earplugs while shopping or listen to music that you know won’t influence your mood too much.

10. Avoid touching the products too much.

Researchers found out that if customers are allowed to see and touch different merchandise in the store, they are more likely to pay more. It turns out that touch really influences our purchase decisions and that sellers turn this into their advantage. When shopping, try to touch only those items that you really intend to buy.

11. Don’t use baskets or carts while buying groceries.

Some stores will even alter the size of their shopping carts. For example, it was found that making the size of a shopping cart bigger can result in more money spent from consumers. The best way to save money is to either use a basket or, even better, your own shopping bag with a prepared list of products you need to buy.

12. Avoid shopping at peak times.

When shoppers are in a crowded store, they feel out of control and it can lead to them spending more money there. Also, a lot of people end up overspending when they go shopping with their friends because they want to keep up with them. Thus, try to buy what you need during the time when malls are almost empty, and preferably try to do it alone.

13. Don’t take free treats.

Free samples of food in different stores are very popular for a simple reason: they can trigger our feeling of reciprocity. If we try something tasty, we might feel that we want to give something back to the place we got it from. Moreover, free food also triggers our appetite and makes us buy more.

14. Always check new packaging.

Companies constantly redesign their product packaging, but this can hide a small trick: the product’s volume. Always check the volume on the updated packaging to see if it shrank and make sure you are not forced to overpay.

15. Revise your wardrobe before going shopping.

Sometimes when shopping for clothes, we might end up buying items that are similar to those we already own. Before you hit the store, go through your closet to check and see what clothes you already have. This way you’ll keep track of all your items and avoid buying similar ones.

What other money-saving tips and tricks do you know about? Let’s share our knowledge in the comment section!


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