Savvy Shoppers

Issue: 
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Thank the web for price transparency: social networking and experience help consumers share information on deals and figure out pricing patterns. So says an online survey of 1,500 Canadians conducted in April 2015 by Leger and commissioned by Smith School of Business. See this article in Smith Business Insight

Results of the survey:

Discount discovery: Delight or cynicism?

When I come across a product that’s been discounted or is on sale, I think:

I’m getting a good deal:  49% I’m not saving much; the store inflated the regular price before discounting 45% Taking the positive view of sales:  Women 55% Men 43% Sharing the sale news with others: Canadians (average) 89%, Atlantic Canadians  97%

Deceptive Advertising

Goods or services that I find cost more than advertised due to confusing pricing or hidden charges:

Mobile phone plans 63% Airline tickets 55% Automobiles 51% Cable/satellite TV 51% Roaming phone fees 50% Internet plans 44% Auto repairs 44% Hotel rooms 31% Mortgages/loans 23% Computers/software 22%

Bested by a Neighbour: Anger or Embarrassment?

When discovering others paid less than I did for the same product:

Embarrassed 40% Angry 55% Likely to be embarrassed Adults aged 55+  32%

Adults aged 18-54  45%

Likely to be angry Adults aged 65+  39%, Adults aged 18-64  58%

Transparency of pricing is perhaps the most immediate impact of the internet and social networking. Customers are jumping the “fences” that companies have carefully set up between market segments.

Yuri Levin
Professor & Distinguished Chair of Operations Management
Smith School of Business

*Some respondents preferred not to answer some questions or offered no opinion.