Christmas Spirit

Today in our lecture we discussed how we buy christmas presents, what can attract us to buy and how children are becoming increasingsly picky and fashion conscious.

So how do girls shop?: Girls shop with consideration, we shop for a long time, pleasurable, relaxing and look for the new trends. I find shopping quite theraputic, even if it is just browsing through shops. Girls usually shop in small groups but personally I like to shop alone. You can spend longer looking at things and not feeling bad if the other is bored, and you can listen to music so you are in your own little world.

How do guys shop then?: Guys… well as quickly as possible and all in one go. They just go into a shop and come out five minutes later with their item as they don’t like spending time to try on garments as it will probably take hours of time. Even I agree with the guys way of shopping sometimes, I hate spending ages.

How do you get customers to buy more: How do you design a shop which will make customers stay longer? Put a restaurant in it? Music? Make it bigger? Well first of all I think you would have to plan your store layout, ambience and attractive visual merchandising displays. Never put things right at the door like clothes and baskets as it will cause the customer to turn around to pick it up and may just make them spot another store thus leave. Try position most attractive and popular items in the right of the store as customers (in UK and Australia) always tend to turn right when entering shops. Must be due to us sitting on the right in a car. For instance, the clothes shop Zara positions their products on the right and have their checkouts on the left as they are the last things we go to – to pay. NEVER situate the woman’s wear at the back of the store, behind men’s wear as more women shop compared to men. Men like to sit down whilst women are in the changing room. In front of the chair maybe place small gadgets or interesting books as the man may pick it up and have a look at it to pass the time. People who touch things are most likely to buy it, if the unfold it or open it, the chances are they will. Also simple common sense factors such as: don’t play loud, inappropriate or poor quality music as it may ruin a customer’s shopping experience; dirty bathrooms, they should always be lovely and clean whether for public use or not as it can be a huge turn off.

How many times have you forgotten the milk but instead come out with a bunch of other stuff? I have. This is the power of the layout of a shop. They specifically place the milk counter at the back of the store because they want you to look at the whole store, thus probably buy something else. Food shops place fruit, veg and flowers at the door to make the store look fresh to lure customers in. Also they are eye catching. They may bake bread and the smell will make its way out of the store, thus alert passer by’s taste buds.

Are you influenced by advertising?: We are being exposed to advertising like never before: on the television; on the internet; when you pass shops; in magazines. However the majority of adverts are aimed towards children. Products like cereal and toys have been advertised since before our grandparents were small. These ads may hook children and trap their parents into an endless loop into buying more and more products.

We watched a Panorama program called the ‘Tweens’. It is about children being lured in by designer brands through advertising and how important it is for them. Please click the link below for information about the Tweens.

Meet the Tweens

I find it hard to think if I was influenced by trends and the newest labels. I think I may have had it different to others as I lived in Brunei where designer brands were not really the ‘thing’. Nobody had them. But I do feel the pressure from other people now, how the sight of a designer label instantly makes you look expensive and rich. But I am not like that at all. I have no designer labels except for my glasses: FCUK. I just don’t see the point in looking like a spoilt brat rich kid. I like looking down to earth.

It is a shame that children are being captured by an identity. (skater, goth, etc). As they are so young and should be living in ease. However when children get the clothes they asked for their self esteem increases, this must be due to the fact of fitting in. As one of the children in the program, Adele, was telling the viewers that if she had a friend who did not wear designer brands she would still be her friend but not hang out with her often. This is because she will get bullied, and thus spread the bullying to Adele as she is her friend.

Now designer brands are getting so popular and trendy that there are now dolls who are fashion focussed and the new ‘thing’: BRATZ. Parents are getting concerned that they are too sexy and giving a bad message to their kids with their skimpy skirts and make-up. I agree in having dolls to play with, like when I was 7 I had good old Barbie dolls but not with slutty clothes on. However, dolls can give the impression that a small being thin is the ‘in thing’. If Barbie was a real person she would have 39 inch chest, 19 inch hip, and 33 inch hips, she would be a size 4 and her body fat would be so low that she would not be able to menstrate. The BRATZ dolls are just the same. Is this the message we want for our children?

Thus, in this lecture I learnt that the price of fashion can hit hard, it can cause parents to work constantly to keep the kids closets full of designer labels and avoid bankruptcy and how to design a shop to increase their sales.

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