Here’s How Stores Trick You Into Spending 20% More

Many shoppers like the ability to order something from a company online and then go to a bricks-and-mortar location to pick it up, perhaps to avoid delivery snafus or keep a present secret from a loved one. It’s convenient for customers (though not always faster than just shopping in store), and yet at the same time, it’s part of a well-laid trap to get more stuff in front of your face in the hopes that you’ll buy it.

The Washington Post‘s Sarah Halzack spoke with Macy’s chief omnichannel officer R.B. Harrison, who’s in charge of wooing customers with a shopping experience that has elements of both the digital and in-person type.

He says the increasingly popular option to “buy online, pick up in store” is a great time to create a sales opportunity as well as serve as a convenience for customers. There are a couple big advantages to that set-up, he explains.

“The most important is that we are getting that customer into the store. And that then becomes an opportunity for her to either, on her own buy something else, or in a really good situation, to use our selling skills and offer other alternatives,” says Harrison. “If a guy’s buying a dress shirt, you sell him ties. If you bought a KitchenAid mixer, how about the adapter so you can make pasta?”

It’s not like this is a secret, as anyone who’s ever been faced with a tempting array of items offered at the checkout to inspire spontaneous purchases knows. But there’s a big difference between a pack of gum and a nice tie — so how much more are people spending, usually?

“It gets footsteps into our stores,” Harrison says. “We experience, on average, increased sales. So, they buy $100 worth of stuff, on average, they leave with $120 to $125 worth of stuff. So it’s a very good transaction for us, and we get them to experience a Macy’s brand.”

From new mobile offerings to a potential off-price business, a look at what’s in store for Macy’s [Washington Post]

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  1. GoldHillDave says:

    Wow, I have absolutely no dog in this fight, but I think the use of the word “trick” here is unfair. The word has a negative connotation, with most definitions including the word “deceive”. How is anyone deceived? They know stuff is for sale in the store when they arrange to pick up orders there.

    I sometimes order online and pick up orders at my local REI store, saving shipping charges. I usually check out the clearance racks while I’m there, but rarely buy anything else.