In order to help creating new offerings, improving communication, organizing delivery and, eventually, increasing the sale. It is important to understand the consumer buying behavior from situational, personality and social aspects. This paper will briefly discuss the marketing strategies of two giant retail department stores, Walmart and Macy’s, in terms of customer buying behaviors.
Macy’s atmospheric settings provide strong stimuli for its customers. First, every season, Macy’s puts up different window showcases to demonstrate its classic and artistic tastes. Also, different ambient colors are used in its shopping environment. These seasonal changes should be able to boost the sale of the fashion apparel. Secondly, Macy’s decorates different themes for different holidays, such as Easter, Mother’s day, Halloween, Christmas, etc. the gift shopping behaviors are likely induced by these themes. Thirdly, Macy’s always plays a comfort and light background music, customers would spend more time into shopping with a good mood as the text points out:” People’s moods temporarily affect their spending patterns” (Tanner, J., Raymond, M. & Schuster, C, 2001)
On the other hand, it seems that Walmart pays a lot of attention to the shoppers’ personality factors. First, Walmart concentrates on the idea of “money saving”. Walking into a Walmart, the “Rollback” tags with two comparing prices are everywhere.
The economical shoppers would compare more on the prices. Secondly, customers who prefer one stop shopping might find that Walmart, with its stock of food, toy, auto parts, etc, is more convenient than other shopping centers. Thirdly, Walmart shelves “as seen on TV” items and dollar items along the cashier to affect the shopping decisions. While waiting in the checkout line, customers are likely to pick up these items as they are categorized as low-involvement products.
Moreover, social factors are also well considered by these two retail giants. In terms of social class, Macy’s focuses more on the middle-class families whereas Walmart targets on the customers with standard income. Wal-Mart exclusives have a mean household income of about $57K (Scarborough Research, 2005). Also, the products, Walmart is selling, represent the main stream of a geographical culture whereas Macy’s might satisfy some groups with special subculture interests such as high-end golf clubs or perfumes. In sum, consumer buying behavior is a very important element in the marketing strategies of a company. Situational, personality and social factors will influence the consumer buying behavior dramatically.