This piece first appeared on SheSpark. See the author’s bio and contact info below the post.
Are you a victim of impulsive shopping? Do you get distracted while shopping for others and end up breaking the bank on gifts for yourself? With e-commerce, the situation could be worse as you have every store and product at your fingertips with ads thrown into each web site and email you read. Below are three tech solutions for controlling those impulsive shopping behaviors and completing your gift list on budget and on time.
According to research conducted by finder.com, 44.1% of American adults planned to spend money on Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales in 2017, averaging $550 each. That totals to $59.57 billion on planned purchases for this year alone.
Furthermore, over 117 million of us (47.8%) hold off purchasing things in the lead up to the sales, with a 30 to 60-day wait being the most common, followed by a few weeks. In fact, 5.9% of us wait an entire year! A complete report can be found here: Black Friday Statistics.
• Women are more likely to hold off or wait for sales (50.4%) compared to men (45.1%)
• Of those waiting, a 1-2 month wait is most popular for both men (14.5%) and women (14.8%)
• 7.0% of women wait a whole year compared to 4.8% of men
• A higher proportion of women intended to spend money on Black Friday sales in 2017 (46.5%) compared to men (41.6%)
• Interestingly, men plan on spending bigger at $651 on average compared to $463 for women
• Baby Boomers are the most likely to purchase goods as soon as they see them rather than holding off (69.0%), followed by Gen Xer’s (46.3%) and Millennials (35.6%)
• For those waiting, a 1-2 month wait is the most popular among all generations
• GenXers plan on spending the most when it comes to generation ($604), followed by Millennials ($557) and Baby Boomers ($438)
“Think about what you want, and more importantly, what you actually need. While items are heavily discounted during this time, don’t be tricked! Sales may start earlier, or that “sale” price might actually be offered all year ‘round. By gathering information, making a list and setting a budget for yourself, you’ll be more aware of a great deal when you see it,” says Jennifer McDermott, Consumer Advocate at finder.com
3 Smart Tools That Help Curb Impulse Shopping
Tip #1 – Use Icebox for a Cooling Off Period
Put your own wish-list “on ice” by installing Icebox, a Chrome browser extension that encourages you to avoid impulsive purchases, and shoppers’ remorse, according to McDermott. It’s easy— the program covers “Buy It Now” buttons with “Put it on ice” buttons. You can choose the length of your cooling off period before a reminder comes up to see if you’re still interested.
Tip #2 – Make A “Smart” Gift List
Just like going to the grocery store, online shopping is more manageable with a list. Santa’s Bag for iPhones not only puts that list on your phone (easy access), but it also budgets for each recipient, itemizes her/his wish list, and what you actually bought with pricing included. Plus, you can upload photos for the recipient as well as the gifts with links to the online vendor.
Google Play has an app called Christmas Gift List that’s a pared down alternative for Android users.
Tip #3 – Comparison Shop
A major reason for Buyer’s Remorse is seeing, or feeling like, you spent too much money on a purchase. “When completing your research, check a variety of stores and sites selling a specific item, as many retailers will price match such a competitive time. There is also an abundance of exclusive coupons and deals on finder.com you can use to stretch your dollar further,” advises McDermott.
SheSpark is also a fan of ShopStyle for fashionistas as it compares pricing for clothing and accessories from small businesses all the way up to department stores and major e-commerce sites.
Support small businesses this year by shopping SheSpark’s Holiday Gift Guide. Discounts and free shipping available for gifts ranging from $3 to $1900.