Impulsive shopping is one of the most valued human actions to the world of business. A lot of advertising and marketing strategies rely on customers seeing an Ad campaign or a carefully and well thought out product display and immediately buying the product in question!
A lot of money and research is put into ensuring that the next Ad campaign yields loads of sales and customers are immediately enticed and tempted to buy the product/item. It’s therefore pretty obvious why it can be sometimes hard to control those buying urges we all get now and again.
So don’t go around blaming yourself for that impulse buy it’s not your fault.
However, Impulse buying can do you a lot more harm than good especially when you’re trying to manage your finances (like me!). The few minutes of satisfaction you get from buying that new pair of shoes is most times not worth the financial debt many of us get ourselves into by indulging our impulsive habits.
I for one have seen my savings drop from a very comfortable point to a not so comfortable point really quick! How? After careful analysis and the help of a spending tracker app, I realised most of my money went into buying clothes; most of which I didn’t actually need, a.k.a Unnecessary impulse purchases. However, I’m glad I’m over that phase and now at a point where I know to only buy what I need and impulse buying is a thing of the past. So how did I overcome my impulsive shopping habit?
Here are a few quick tips!
Make a list
Yes even for fashion items. If you intend to change your wardrobe and stick to a specific budget, write down the items you want to get. Write them out neatly, carefully and nicely on a clean sheet of paper (or on your mobile notepad) and stick to the list! Do not deviate from the items on your list. This way, your mind will be a lot more focused whenever you go shopping or find yourself window shopping. You’ll know exactly what you need rather than opting for anything that catches your fancy.
Understand the true value of your money
You need to really understand the value of your money to overcome impulsive shopping. How I think of my money is by thinking about the number of hours I’ll need to work to get back the amount spent on item X. Now some people work and earn money per hour. For such people, it’s much easier to know the exact value of your ‘work-time‘, e.g. If you earn £7 an hour, you know that buying an item that cost £70 means giving up 10 hours of work for the item in question. You are then able to make a judgement and see if the item you want to get is actually worth 10 hours of your life. For those who earn a salary like myself, you might want to divide your total income by the total number of hours you work to put your money into perspective. Trust me, the next time you decide you want to buy an item on impulse, you might just think twice or three times about it.
Avoid unnecessary shopping trips
… even online! You already know your weakness so why feed it? If you have the tendency to shop on impulse so there’s no need to tempt yourself even further. Look around store only when you really need to.
Shop only when you’re of sound mind
Wondering why? Well, for some people like myself, shopping can be therapeutic and sometimes you might find yourself shopping when you’re sad or down. Stop! Make a conscious effort to find other ways to get yourself out of your bad mood. It could be watching a movie, hanging out with friends or whatever is cheaper than spending money on things you don’t really need all in a bid to cheer yourself up.
So those are my 4 tips on getting over an impulsive shopping habit from one
Ex-Shopaholic to another (I’m still on the road to complete recovery #lol). Got any other tips?