The Complex Shopper: Meet Patricia, The Experience Lover

The Complex Shopperis an annual research and analysis project conducted by The Integer Group and Decision Analyst. It is designed to reveal the motivations that drive the considered purchase process – those infrequent, big-ticket items ranging in price from $100s to $1000s.

One outcome from the study was identifying four distinct shopper types – Fretting Frugals, Experience Lovers, Passive Purchasers and Social Adventurers. In our last post we defined Gary, the Fretting Frugal. Today, we’ll identify Patricia, the Experience Lover.

A confident shopper who embraces the process

Patricia was born to shop! She absolutely loves the shopping process. She knows what she wants and can visualize how great that new bedroom set or couch will look in her home. Patricia describes herself as organized (58 percent of Experience Lovers identified themselves as this), imaginative (53 percent) and assertive (45 percent). As a result, she rarely passes the responsibility of the final purchase decision to anyone else because she is confident in her abilities.

When it comes to research, Patricia is in her element – shopping is her therapy, her buzz and it makes her feel good. The strength of her positive shopping emotions exceeds all other shopper types:

  • Satisfied – 85 percent
  • Excited – 61 percent
  • Happy – 75 percent
  • Smart – 63 percent

She enthusiastically searches a variety of websites, looks at reviews and visits the store. Of all the shopper types, Patricia visits the store the least at two and one-half times per purchase and on average will go online eight times.

Some women shop for shoes, Patricia loves to shop for furniture – in fact, she leads all shopper types in category spend for furniture at 42 percent, which is almost double the next closest shopper type. She’s not as worried about what that furniture sits on though – spending the least of all shopper types in the flooring category with only 17 percent of the total category spend.

Engaging Patricia

To motivate this shopper, increase both in-store and online interaction to give her ways to share the experience in person or via social shopping. Keeping in mind the number of times she goes online to research, the digital experience needs to be easy and engaging. Appeal to her imagination, her confident sense of self and entertain her love of the process and she’s likely to make a recommendation about your product or brand post-purchase. Approximately one in five Experience Lovers will accept and receive emails from a brand, so plan to communicate with Patricia after the sale.

Our fourth and final shopper type – the Passive Purchaser – will be up next in our review of The Complex Shopper.