Too Much Information Impedes Consumers’ Buying Decisions

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An interesting report describing a new feature of consumers’ behaviour across the globe was published this morning. According to research by advisory company CEB, consumers in the UK, US and the Asia-Pacific region tend to become extremely entangled when facing a choice overload, making them hesitate to buy because there are too many options to look over, Marketing Week reports.

For some 41% of the respondents, having too many options to choose from causes concerns about the product they are purchasing. Screening plenty of product information when deciding what to buy is also straining shoppers, with 12% of the 7,000 consumers polled claiming that researching a product now takes more time than two years ago. Another 20% said that they conduct further research even after deciding what to purchase.

Shoppers also find difficulties when making a simple purchase, for example buying orange juice in the supermarket. According to CEB’s executive adviser and research head Matt McCance, the standard purchasing funnel is no longer effective for current marketers since following the awareness-consideration-preference-final purchase method may not lead consumers towards a purchase. Consumers are becoming less confident when wondering what to buy and thus their confidence in brands is decreasing, he said.

The global recession is also playing its part in the changing trends in consumer behaviour, along with the eagerness to try new brands and the discounts offered. The economic slowdown is forcing lots of consumers to make their first buy from lower-end retailers and turn away from their regular brands and stores. The trend is further supported by modern technologies, which help consumers find and buy from new retailers.