I have recently had the opportunity to spend considerable time in the changing rooms of a few stores I wouldn’t normally visit (parenthood eh?!).
On one such visit, I noticed these hooks which struck me as being interesting on two levels. OK, it was actually three, but the third one is just confirmation of how atrocious the lighting is in these places!:
Firstly, these demonstrate great understanding about consumer behaviour when in such situations. Most of us go into these rooms and start to separate out the items we have in our hands. Some of them may be coats, bags and shopping from other stores. Others will be the precious items we are wanting to try on. So how useful are these hooks? How ‘understood’ do I feel? They instantly give us a way to organise ourselves and support us through the process of making our decisions.
But wait. Have you noticed the decisions we get to make?
Yes, the second reason these are so interesting is that they are not making it easy for us to say ‘no’ to any of our items are they? We can organise our own things and, as we try each item on we can put them on a ‘Definitely’ or a ‘Maybe’ hook. Great. But there is nowhere to put the items we decide we do not want. It is subtle, but significant. They have made the path smooth and easy for us to purchase items, but not for us to reject them.
What this will essentially do is stop us from carrying out our intentions for a moment. It will bring us to conscious awareness at a critical moment when we are thinking ‘no, I’m not going to have that one’. But instead of making it easy for us to put it on a ‘Not for me’ hook, we have to think about where to place it. It isn’t ‘My Stuff’ and it isn’t ‘Definitely’ so the only other option is for it to go back onto the ‘Maybe’ hook. So it gets a psychological reprieve and has another chance to be considered. It may not get tried on again, but the consumer is already reducing their commitment to this decision by placing it on that hook. Clever isn’t it?
So, what methods are you using to achieve the same results in your business? In what ways are you demonstrating a thorough understanding of the processes your customers go through and the behaviours they exhibit? And how are you smoothing the pathway for them to decide in your favour? REALLY understanding the customer journey and their needs at each stage can dramatically transform the way you both interact with them and serve them.
If nothing else, you could get them hooked onto your brand!