On Black Friday, thousands of vendors lure people with tempting offers. They use tricks to persuade people to make a purchase.
Around Black Friday or Cyber Week, most people are looking for deals. Because everything looks tempting and you want to buy something so that you can also benefit from the offers.
But behind the desire to “want to buy” there is a sophisticated method that is also known as the “scarcity principle”.
The scarcity principle is used to encourage people to buy
Most of you are probably familiar with the offers that aggressively advertise that they are particularly limited, rare, or almost sold out. Amazon particularly likes to use such systems:
- Lightning offers are only available to a limited extent and a bar shows what percentage of them have already been sold.
- Some products have the threatening message “Only 3 left available”.
- In addition, there are constantly emails or messages indicating that the offers are almost over and that you definitely have to check.
With such urgency, many people feel convinced to resort to a product. After all, you get told from everywhere that it has to be rare or almost gone.
What’s behind it? Peter Kenning is head of the business administration chair at the University of Düsseldorf and a professor with a focus on marketing, explains in the online magazine Impulsesthat the scarcity principle is behind such scarce offers. Because “the scarcer a product is, the more attractive customers perceive it.” But if there are suddenly significantly fewer available, then “the product that is not available or is particularly scarce becomes more desirable.”
This then appeals to people’s emotions: People are afraid of missing out on something and buy the things. Because limited things are always more desirable than when things are readily available. You can see how well the principle works with teleshopping, where you can watch the supplier’s warehouses empty.
Some people may still be familiar with the hype surrounding scarce items from the PS5 shortage a year ago. Scalpers grabbed thousands of consoles and then sold them at high prices. In the meantime, scalpers are stuck with the PS5 consoles.
What are the limits of this trick? But such shortages also have limits, such as: NDR explains:
- Zalando, for example, was warned because it advertised that it only had one pair of shoes on offer. In the shop you could put any number of pairs in your shopping cart and buy them.
- Booking.com was sued for misleading people because the portal stated that it only had one room available. The room was still easily available on other sites.
As the NDR explains, such actions are misleading consumers.
When you buy things, you buy things at full price
What is the second problem? Often a second thing comes into play. Many people, when they are already in a buying frenzy, put a few things in their shopping cart that are not on sale but that they wanted to buy or try out at some point anyway.
You quickly end up buying things that you didn’t even want. So-called full-price items that are not reduced are also welcome.
Be careful of the following products: By the way, there are a number of things you shouldn’t buy on Black Friday. Because you can get these much cheaper later. You can read what these are directly from us on MeinMMO:
Black Friday: You should definitely not buy these 7 things on Amazon etc