The Case For Shopping Baskets

| Wednesday, December 15th, 2010 | No Comments »

You might think that baskets are just for supermarkets – after all who wants to carry a basket around a small independent shop? But that’s where you would be horribly wrong. Imagine the scenario; a woman walks into a shop, which is a good sign, she obviously wants to buy something. But hang on, she’s already got one of her hands full – she’s carrying a handbag. Well of course she is, who do you know goes shopping without their handbag or perhaps a purchase they’ve already made? In fact we are so used to going out of the house with a bag that on the rare occasions we leave the house completely empty handed we feel as though we’ve forgotten something. Ok, so back to the woman, she’s walked into the shop and one of her hands is already taken up with her bag which leaves just one hand free. She picks up the item she’s been looking for but then spots something else she’d quite like. How does she pick it up? She’s now got both hands full, so she either has to juggle the two items in one hand or leave with just the item she came in for. You see how that shop just missed a sale?

Impulse Sales

As any shop keeper knows, impulse sales are the best ones but in order to benefit from them you have to make it easy for your customer to make those impulse purchases. Hence the basket; a basket is easily held in one hand and can hold up to 10 items or more. In fact, when you do put a single item into the basket it looks quite odd and empty and it seems a waste going up to the till with just one object in your basket, so psychologically you’re already persuaded buy more.

Basket Placement

No matter how small your shop is, a stack of baskets will come in useful and will almost always be picked up by the customer upon entering the door … well depending on whereabouts you place them that is! As mentioned in a previous blog, anything placed in the shop landing strip may well be overlooked, so don’t place baskets just at the side of the door. The most ideal place would be to the right of the entrance (most people automatically veer to the right when entering a store) outside the landing strip so that customers have to walk around them to get to the rest of the shop. Once placed like this they will be picked up automatically by shoppers used to having baskets.

And once they have a basket in their hand they are unlikely to return it empty so again, it’s a great psychological method to encourage people to buy.

Therefore in summary baskets can:

  • Free up that spare hand to make impulse buying easier.
  • Encourage customers to put more than one item into the basket.
  • Discourage shoppers from leaving the shop empty handed.

So think again about your policy of not having baskets in a small shop as you could be missing out on some vital sales.

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