Malcolm Gladwell The Science Of Shopping Analysis

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Capturing Great Deals at Best Buy: The White Buffalo of Shopping The steam rises into the early morning air from the large thermos of coffee, which I brought along for the long wait. The time on my watch is 4:56am, four minutes until the hunt begins. In the darkness the air is crisp and the smoky vapors from the breath of everyone in line creates an atmosphere of eerie anticipation. I was surprised to see almost one hundred people in line at Best Buy, when I arrived at 3:00am, which meant that I had to adjust my game plan, go for what I know I can get and leave the high profile items for everyone else to fight over. I go over my plan of attack one more time, get in, take a right and head for the DVD recorders and secure…show more content…
The retail industry uses this information to create a more inviting experience for the consumer, and they have discovered that the promise of great deals through the use of advertisements, colorful signs, attention-getting logos, helpful and knowledgeable employees, and easy-to-access products inside of the stores. These tactics may increase the amount money spent and/or the volume of products sold. The retail industry has devoted many resources to understanding what motivates consumers. Malcolm Gladwell in his essay “The Science of Shopping” explores this trend of studying consumer shopping habits. Gladwell points out, “There are companies that put tiny cameras inside frozen-food cases in supermarket aisles” (408). This strategy is how the companies collect data of shoppers’ natural tendencies without their knowledge. This data is used by companies to induce consumers to potentially purchase a greater amount than they would under different circumstances. Susan Willis explores the use of the same strategy information gathering in the essay “Disney World: Public Use/ Private State.” Willis believes that with the intimacy that the retailers know their customers there isn’t much room for deviation of a shopping…show more content…
A bright yellow tag with bold black numbering is located in front of every item for sale in the store. There is no question that this is the affordable price of this item. The American middle-class consumer sees this price and decides if they want to purchase it. If the customer does not have the cash to pay for it that day, Best Buy has an easy to use consumer credit program. The consumer merely has to sign up for the Best Buy credit card to take home the product of their dreams. Roland Marchand in his essay, “The Parable of the Democracy of Goods”, discusses how the American retailers influence the American consumer. He observes, “The constant reminders that… ‘every home can afford’ was to publicize an image of American society” (151). He continues this thought by stating, “Social classes restricted no family’s opportunity to acquire the most significant products” (151). Marchand is implying that the retailers are convincing the consumers that to be a part of American society, buying these products is necessary, no matter what social class they belong to. Solomon points out a similar view about influencing the American consumer. He contends, “American companies manufacture status symbols because American consumers want them” (162). Solomon is suggesting that the American consumer wants products that can set them apart from the rest of society when

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