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    HomeMoneyImpulsive Buying: Why We Can't Resist Online Shopping

    Impulsive Buying: Why We Can’t Resist Online Shopping

    Impulsive buying is a behavior where individuals make unplanned purchases without thinking through the consequences. But what are the main reasons why people impulse buy things online?

    Online shopping has become a popular pastime for people all around the world. With just a few clicks of a button, we can order items that will be delivered straight to our doorstep. However, with the convenience of online shopping comes the temptation to impulse buy. Impulsive buying is a behavior where individuals make unplanned purchases without thinking through the consequences. But what are the main reasons why people impulse buy things online?

    Instant Gratification

    One of the main reasons people impulse buy things online is the desire for instant gratification. Online shopping makes it possible to get what you want almost instantly. There is no need to wait in long lines or deal with the hassle of going to a physical store. With just a few clicks, you can order what you want, and it will be delivered to your doorstep quickly. This instant gratification can be addictive, and people may find themselves making impulsive purchases just for the thrill of receiving a package in the mail.

    Fear of Missing Out

    Another reason why people impulse buys things online is the fear of missing out (FOMO). When we see something that we want online, we may feel that we need to buy it right away before it sells out or the price goes up. This fear of missing out can be especially strong when we see that other people have already bought the item, and we feel like we need to keep up with them. This can lead to impulsive buying behavior as we feel the need to act quickly before the opportunity is gone.

    Perceived usefulness

    Perceived usefulness also affects impulsive buying because when a person perceives a product or service as useful, it increases their likelihood of making an impulsive purchase. If an individual believes that the product will fulfill a need or solve a problem, they may feel a sense of urgency to buy it before the opportunity passes. This perception of usefulness can be further strengthened by positive reviews, recommendations from friends or influencers, and marketing messages that highlight the benefits of the product.

    From another point of view, mobile shopping is influenced by various factors, with mobile proficiency being a crucial aspect. When individuals possess a high level of mobile competency, it mitigates their apprehensions about using mobile technology and motivates them to engage in mobile shopping.

    The researchers Rambabu Lavuri, Jaspreet Kaur, and Park Thaichon indicate in their recent study named ”Intrinsic motivations affecting millennial mobile impulsive shopping in emerging markets during the COVID-19 pandemic” that mobile shopping has a notably favorable effect on perceived usefulness. They also discovered that perceived ease of use has a positive correlation with perceived usefulness.

    Additionally, they discovered that perceived ease of use, usefulness, a utilitarian and hedonic value significantly impact trust and attitude towards impulsive mobile shopping.
    More interesting is that perceived trust has a positive association with mobile shopping. Also, millennials’ impulsive mobile shopping is positively impacted by perceived usefulness, ease of use, utilitarian and hedonic value, trust, and attitude.

    Sales and Discounts

    Sales and discounts can also be a major drivers of impulsive buying behavior. Online retailers often offer sales and discounts that are time-limited, leading people to feel that they need to act quickly to take advantage of the deal. The idea of getting something at a discounted price can be very tempting, even if we don’t actually need the item. Retailers know this and may use tactics such as countdown timers or limited availability messages to create a sense of urgency and encourage people to make impulse purchases.

    Boredom and Stress

    People may also turn to online shopping as a way to deal with boredom or stress. Shopping can be a way to distract ourselves from negative emotions or to fill a void in our lives. When we are feeling down or anxious, the thrill of making a purchase can provide a temporary boost in mood. This can lead to impulsive buying behavior as we turn to online shopping as a way to cope with difficult emotions.

    Lack of Self-Control

    Finally, a lack of self-control can also be a major factor in impulsive buying behavior. When we see something that we want online, our impulse may be to buy it right away without thinking through the consequences. We may not take the time to consider whether we actually need the item or whether we can afford it. This lack of self-control can lead to impulsive buying behavior that we may later regret.

    With these being said, there are many reasons why people impulse buys things online. From the desire for instant gratification to the fear of missing out and the lure of sales and discounts, online shopping can be a slippery slope toward impulsive buying behavior. However, by recognizing the factors that contribute to impulsive buying and taking steps to manage our impulses, we can avoid falling into the trap of overspending and regretting.

    Gabriela Luigia
    Gabriela Luigiahttps://gherf.com/author/gabriela-luigia-sterie/
    Gabriela Luigia Sterie is Editor in Chief at Gherf. She's a researcher and her focus areas encompass digital marketing, social media, fake news, branding, consumer behavior and user behavior. Her research has been published in emerging journals. Moreover, she obtained a scientific research grant in the fake news sharing studying area. Her passion for research developed from her passion for writing. She is a copywriter and content writer with over 5 years of experience.
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