I run out of toast paste so I need go to a supermarket to buy a jar of peanut butter. Should I just buy a crunchy one of the same brand I bought last time, or just the one that can be easily picked on the shelf, or the one with a yellow tag saying half price? Well, this is a question much harder than purchasing peanut butter itself, and the result varies definitely.
Talking about brand loyalty, it is always the least important consideration for me. Food of different brands taste the same at least for me, and everyone knows consumers have to pay more for advertisements on big brands, so the product itself means more to customers. As for the producer, they might have more impacts on the retailer and persuade them to put fewer competitors on shelf, whereas they need patience to build up long-term customer loyalty. I think about brand in rare products like Vegemite, but these examples are unique.
Between two other factors, I am surprised to know the influence of products’ location. Researchers tracked 67 subjects on shelf and found that consumers tend to focus on the objects in the middle – five seconds before they make their choice. Also, this doesn’t mean it is in the middle of the one’s visual field, but the entire shelf layout. The research tried to explain this with the similar choice people make when choosing the middle toilet (though I don’t do that) or a middle seat at a table.
I used to think people tend to compare the price and choose a better deal, but studies showed that most consumers had no conscious awareness when they get stuff in their shopping list from the shelf – anything can happen in those 5 seconds when they pass a shelf and prepare the tick one thing, and smart producers know how to use it through its products location.
Do you have something from the supermarket but untouched? I do, and I really think I need to reconsider the reason I bought those things back next time.