Shopping Buddy

May 24, 2010

During the observation in several different markets these days, most Londoners do shopping alone; some of them also do shopping with family, boyfriend/girlfriend, and friends. Consumers’ shopping behaviors, interaction with products and purchase decisions would vary a lot depending on their various shopping buddies.

My Shopping Buddy — Me

Those who do shopping alone are usually young women, from 22 to 26. They would look around the products displayed and grab two or three similar products. For example, if a girl wants to buy a pair of high heels, she would take two or three similar style high heels but with little differences to try on. Especially for shoes, the more she tried, the more possible that she will purchase nothing in the end. Also, they are relatively quicker shoppers and they don’t look the tags before they want to try them on.

My Shopping Buddy – Friends/Mom/Daughter

During girls shopping, friends’ recommendations play a vital role in shopping behaviors. Also, rather than shopping alone, they will have more communication and interaction with the brands and products. They will talk about the product features, styles or latest trends. For instance, if a girl is interested in one clothing item and want to try it on, as long as her friend shows a little bit negative opinions, she will put them away and never take them to the fitting room. On the other hand, girls will be proactive to make recommendations for their friends.  They would say, “Hey Jane, try this!” Even though Jane is not that interested in it, it’s more possible for her to bring this piece into the fitting room, which also increases the purchasing possibility.

Moreover, for Mom/Daughter shopping, they are also looking for each other’s advises. In most cases, mom would grab more pieces for their daughters to try than daughters would do for their moms.

My Shopping Buddy – Boyfriend/Girlfriend

In Topshop, 95% of the seats are occupied by men. They are waiting in front of the fitting rooms. They usually walk behind their girlfriends/wives and carry the bags for them. Every time that girl wants to hear some advises from her boyfriend, his response is usually quite simple and short. And they will not recommend any products. In some sense, they are just a company.

However, I went to do the observation in the GAP Men. The interesting thing is that usually, women’s recommendations would affect a lot on men’s purchasing decisions. Women would pick the clothes for their boyfriends/husbands and suggest them to try them on. As long as women think the products are good for their lovers, men would buy them. In conclusion, women play a vital role in the purchasing decision process in the fashion market in London.

In the last several days in UK, I want to do more observations in Manchester and  share my observation notes from UK fashion industry with my group members. I hope that we could do more researches about the related cultures in London and discuss more about how to analyze the phenomena in depth. Only critical thinking could help us to find a pattern.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: