Tag Archives: buying tactics

Does Shopping Make You Feel Guilty?

The retail industry is getting pretty desperate these days—how many more special events and functions will we see that scream “Oooo! Please, please come shop in our store!” According to the Wall Street Journal, the latest tactic in trying to woo the recessionary customer is to assuage shoppers’ guilt.

In some cases, this goes straight to the point instead of tip-toeing around the you shouldn’t be spending atmosphere. Take, perhaps, the best example out there, Gilt Groupe, a sample sale website (and admitted Frisky obsession) whose name is a play on the word “guilt.” The site’s co-founder, Alexis Maybank, explains that now retailers like her are placing emphasis on battling this new culture of consumer guilt: “It used to be about keeping up with the Joneses, and now it’s about outsaving the Joneses … We need to encourage people to get excited about fashion.” Gilt’s short-timed sales have set off a wave of similar online initiatives, which rev up shoppers and distract them from negative feelings.

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