5 Ways Supermarkets Trick Shoppers-Kiplinger

Slide Show | October 2011

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5 Ways Supermarkets Trick Shoppers

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Ever go to the supermarket for milk and instead come home with a trunk full of groceries? Don’t blame yourself -- blame the tricks that retailers play on the subconscious portion of a shopper’s brain, which influences emotions and behavior. Scientists estimate that we make 80% of our shopping decisions based on subtle signals of which we’re not even consciously aware. Increasingly, marketers are on the scent, using a set of techniques called neuromarketing to craft advertisements, packaging and in-store displays that appeal to the emotions and subconscious mind.

These techniques can be difficult to identify. In fact, in a hectic supermarket setting, the brain consciously processes only one-billionth of the information it receives every second. But staying conscious of your subconscious, and the tricks that marketers play on it, can help you make purchases that appeal to your wallet rather than your impulses.

We reveal five of the most common neuromarketing techniques and how to uncover them in the shopping aisle.

5 Ways Supermarkets Trick Shoppers
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