Day# 139: Intro to the psychology of online shopping, part 1

Day# 139: Intro to the psychology of online shopping, part 1

Hi everyone, for those that don’t know this is a blog where UX, psychology and so much more get discussed on a daily basis. My goal is to have a post a day for 365 days, not even halfway phew! Anyway I recently started delving into the psychology behind eCommerce and wanted to work my way through some interesting psychological studies. As usual I normally do a series, and this will be no different, I will try break up each post to bite size pieces for being able to read a bit easier everyday to keep up with. First I want to go through my own eCommerce experiences from a user’s perspective, this is purely out of interest and does not relate to content that we will be discussing directly.

As I have said before I have grown up in South Africa, we have an insane amount of crime in our country and because of it for a long time I had never purchased anything online. I even made my transactions at the actual bank for a long time, (this is not to become stereotypical behavior of south Africans though because I know lots of people that were using Online banking for years. I was really just one of the slow ones) However with buying online I would say South Africans are less trusting, it is probably a combination of our level of crime as well as the less comfort that a lot of people have in the Online space. Anyway I eventually did start using online banking, but it took even longer for me to make any Online purchases. I remember wanting to buy something online that I really couldn’t find in any local stores, and telling my boyfriend that I was so worried that I would never get what I paid for haha! Fast forward and I am now a pretty comfortable Online Shopper my habits have changed drastically. What is interesting is most of the bad Online experiences I have had, have been with local companies, I have had items delivered to me from all over the world yet I have to ensure that I use private delivery companies. The public postal system is so shocking that I think it really can affect one’s view of a brand, even though the product being held by the postal service which is of poor quality is really no fault of the brand themselves. I would say this would define me as as a specific type of user, for example the offers of free shipping with reputable private shipping companies, is always a benefit for me. Anyway in the posts to come, I will be discussing how sites grab your attention through behavioral science mechanisms like reciprocity, social validation and the psychology behind reviews and ratings.

For now though take a look at the below, it is an intro into the shoppers mind, a documentary into the the human mind and behavioral sciences industry. The documentary discusses various alarming studies and how we as humans put value above actual value of a product, as well as various other interesting and thought provoking studies conducted.

Looking forward to this series, and as always happy researching until next time Uxers

Bye for now

 

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