An impulsive consumer is one who is not guided by objective criteria when making a purchase.
Seen in another way, the impulsive consumer is one who is carried away by his emotions when purchasing a good or service.
One of the main clues these buyers often show is excess over planned expenses. It may be, for example, that they have found an offer that they considered unmissable, or an article that caught their attention too much.
This type of consumer is the opposite of a rational one, being this one who mainly uses reason before making an expense.
We must take into account that all consumers, to some extent, can be carried away by their impulses. As much as people are rational, strategies can always be developed to encourage the purchase, and, on many occasions, by appealing to emotion. For example, launching "must-do" or "last available units" ads can always get the public's attention.
Variables that influence the impulsive consumer
Some of the main variables that influence the impulsive consumer are the following:
- The offers, since they give the buyer the feeling that they are facing an opportunity that they cannot miss. It can be, for example, discounts for a certain volume of purchase, or a special settlement for change of season.
- The search for social acceptance, that is, the feeling that a product must be purchased to be "fashionable" or in line with a particular social group.
- The search to pretend a status or to show a certain standard of living. This can lead to the acquisition of luxury goods, simply by demonstrating to others the economic possibility of buying them.
- The environment where purchases are made. In this regard, supermarkets and other retail stores have been studying consumer behavior. For that reason, they emit a certain style of music, or perfume the environment in a certain way, so that the customer feels encouraged to buy.
Difference between impulsive consumer and compulsive consumer
It is important to differentiate between an impulsive consumer and a compulsive shopper. The latter also tends to overspend, but then shows regret. In contrast, an impulsive consumer does not feel remorse.
It can also be noted that the compulsive buyer suffers from an addiction, that is, it is more of a disease than a consumer profile. Therefore, it must be treated with psychological help.
See: compulsive shopping.