I woke up on Boxing Day morning and my timeline on Twitter and Facebook was filled with photos of the queues that were awaiting the opening of Harrods or Harvey Nichols. People that had woken up at the crack of dawn to take their place in line, in the freezing cold…hoping to grab a ‘bargain’. This afternoon I walked past my local Jack Wills store and was shocked at the queue that had formed. An assortment of shoppers all waiting for their time to rummage through the plethora of knocked down hoodies and sweat pants.
I’ve wrote sales posts in the past, if you want tips on savvy sale shopping then I suggest you check out my archive as these posts will serve you well:
However, have you ever wondered why do we go crazy for sales?
I have. I cannot fathom getting up before sunrise, forgoing the luscious warmth of a pillow on my cheek and enduring the elements in hope that I may be fortunate enough to strong arm a pair Jimmy Choos all while keeping the claws of other coveters at arms length.
It doesn’t matter the discount, nothing could persuade me to give up a day spent with my family in front of a warm fire, eating great, home cooked, food.
But not everyone shares my view. Millions of people DO get up on Boxing Day and DO queue up in an attempt to grab a bargain.
Over the years retailers have become masters at hyping up the sale period with promises of tempting discounts. What this does is create an artificial demand on goods. When the artificial demand and the perceived value of items sky rocket, it causes people to camp outside stores for hours just to grab something with a knocked down price. There is also this herd mentality that’s created, people are led to feel that they’re some how ‘missing out‘ if they don’t participate. You see it all the time in the sales adverts ‘Don’t miss out’ is regularly cited.
But once they have you in the store the retailers really sink their teeth in. Everything about a retail space is set up in order to get you to part with as much cash as possible. Ever noticed how Topshop pump out the music at a level to rival your local disco? Or at your local department store as soon as you walk in you’re greeted with the delicious odour of a concoction of perfumes. They even know which way you’re more likely to turn when you leave an escalator and have items placed intentionally, ready to catch your gaze.
There was a reason we placed Christian Louboutin at the front of the shoe department in the department store I worked at. Even the lighting is strategically placed and configured.
All this strategic planning of a retail space helps get the heart rate racing, which can affect ones emotions and interfere with our ability to make clear, calm decisions. Which is why you’ll often purchase an item in the sales and then regret it when you get home. The adrenaline inducing set up of stores along with the hype created by the retailers can also cause competition amongst shoppers. People feel as though someone might get a better deal or they’ll miss out on grabbing something special. So you get hundreds of people running around a store, pumped full of adrenaline, heart racing. It’s no surprise then that you hear about fights breaking out and people getting injured or even killed come sale time.
I’ll leave you with my latest Vlog, I want to experiment more with video this year so if you have any ideas or tips for Vlogs let me know in the comment section.
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