Everything is Miscellaneous Prologue – My Thoughts

After reading the prologue from the book “Everything is Miscellaneous“, it is interesting to see how over the years retailers have invested billions of dollars into researching customer behavior. They study the customer’s eye movements and body language to understand how customers go through the process of selecting their products. They know how to set up their store to take advantage of the physical space so customers will have to walk past several items before they reach the product they are looking for. In doing so customers will end up spending more money than they originally planned.

Most customers usually don’t like to ask for help when it comes to shopping; they would rather browse freely. This is the reasons why retailers have so many signs set up all through out their stores. However they usually can’t fit any more than 3 bullet points on a sign before it become overwhelming. They also group related items together like the printers, printing paper, link, and cables. Setting up shelve heights according to eye level will also help a store sell more products. So many retails fight and bid for the precious space at the eye level of their demographic whether it’s men, women, or children.

After the revolution of the internet and online shopping, customers no longer have to look at everything else they are not interested in. They can by pass all the annoying sales people and go directly to the product they are interested in. This means that there is a much suppler opportunity for customers to engage in inplus buys. iTunes also understood this model and offer consumers the chance to buy the individual songs rather than forcing them to buy the whole album. Customers can browse for products in the way they want to. They don’t have to be restricted by the categories on the signs around the store.  The last sentence the author writes is “…information doesn’t just want to be free. It wants to be miscellaneous”.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Mihaela
    Mar 04, 2011 @ 10:18:09

    Thank you for posting reading notes, Michelle! I’m glad you became aware of the huge area of research that is consumer behavior. There’s an entire science out there trying to get us to buy… so who are we to resist? 😉


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