Now You Know

You Touch, You Buy

We’ve all seen the sign on the display table of expensive (and fragile) items: “You Break, You Buy.”

Now, a new study published in the Journal of Consumer Research points to evidence that merely touching an object increases the feelings of ownership a person has for the object. This, in turn, results in a person being willing to pay more for most objects that they touch versus objects that they cannot touch.

According to authors Joann Peck (University of Wisconsin-Madison) and Suzanne B. Shu (UCLA), “encouraging touch in a retail store, as Apple does for products like the iPhone, may increase the feelings of perceived ownership and influence the amount a customer is willing to pay for a product.”

Now you know why the Apple Store allows you to go around touching and trying all their wonderful gadgets.

But what if it is not possible for consumers to touch the products, as in online shopping? “Having people imagine owning a product increases their perception of ownership and how much they are willing to pay for a product.”

There, now you know.

If you are a seller, let your customers touch and visualize owning a product.

If you are a consumer, keep your hands off the goods to avoid unwanted or unnecessary purchases.

Ah, we all want to handle that brand new Panasonic LX5 or Fujifilm F300EXR now, don’t we? It will look good in your hands…