'Flexibile, self-restraint people are impulsive shoppers'

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Washington, Dec 22 (UNI) New research shows that people with flexible choices or those with the ablity to think and act are impulsive buyers, helping salespersons gauge consumer's behaviour in a better way.

Researchers from the University of New Hampshire, UK found that shoppers who exhibit high levels of flexibility or low levels of self-restraint are most likely to make an impulse buyers, the Science Daily reported.

People high in flexibility are able to revise plans in the face of obstacles, setbacks, new information, or mistakes.

They are highly adaptable to changing conditions. People high in self-restraint have the ability to think before they act.

They can resist the urge to say or do something to allow time to evaluate the situation and how a behavior might affect it.

The research consisted of observations of shopping behavior, followed by short surveys designed to validate the cognitive functions of self-restraint or flexibility associated with the observed behavior. In 95 per cent of the cases, the observed behavior was validated by the survey results.

They found that highly flexible customers browse extensively and tend to walk around the store. They are not loyal to any one brand. They are open to suggestions from sales associates and are easily persuaded into purchasing the generic, less-costly version of an item or even to trade up. If such shoppers are not able to find the desired product, they tend to purchase another similar product.

Consumers with low-self restraint randomly look at products, walking through the aisles grabbing different items. They appear distracted or scattered, picking up items without a pattern.

Sometimes they will pick up an item, put it back, then go back and get it for purchase. Sales are very attractive to these consumers, whether or not they planned to purchase the item, they are the true impulse buyer.

Inflexible customers may be the most difficult for salespeople, since they can be openly difficult and stubborn.

These customers are ''on a mission'', they know what they want and walk directly to the department of the store. If it's not available, they will turn around and walk out.

''The researchers found that these impulse and non-impulse behaviors in shoppers can be identified in less than a minute, which could instantly indicate to a salesperson who is most likely to listen to their sales advice and who is not,'' research guide Professor Chuck Martin said.


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