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The Psychology Behind Point of Purchase Advertising: What Makes The Consumer Buy

The most challenging ideas in marketing deal with comprehending why buyers do what they do or don’t do. Understanding buyer behavior is pivotal to the success of any retail product.  You need to deliver the right message, at the right time in the right place.

Surveys can shed light on what is important to the customer as well as demonstrating the key influences on decision making. However, human beings are ultimately unpredictable, making the majority of their retail purchasing decisions in store at the point of purchase.

This is why point of purchase advertising is such and important consideration for any company selling products in a retail space.

Information Creates Interest – Interest Drives Decision Making

Why does anyone choose one product over another? Customer behavior is not an exact science – but we do understand a lot about what makes people make that last minute buying action.  The key influence is information.

At the time of purchase the consumer needs to feel assured that the product will meet their wants or needs.  Packaging can help with this, but customers will not often take the time to read the small print.  Point of purchase advertising in the form of signage or a display offers much more opportunity to reinforce branding messages. It is this information which enhances interest and leads to buying decisions.

Psychological Models of Consumer Behavior

In the past, models of consumer purchase behavior were represented by funnel shapes designed to reflect the biggest number of potential purchase options.  As the consumer processed information through a linear decision making process the field of choices narrowed.

Marketers would aim to reach consumers by impacting their awareness and familiarity of their products within certain stages of the funnel. Various advertising mediums were used to convince consumers to consider their particular brand whenever a purchase requirement was triggered.

This was supported with packaging design, in store/service environments, promotion, and point of purchase advertising to gain trust. These final push tactics were used once consumers narrowed the field to just a few choices.

Creative advertising always gets noticed by interested consumers. The problem is that in the past 25 years there has been an explosion of products, media venues and services, which has created a clutter of messaging the human mind can’t process.

During this time it is estimated that the average number of marketing messages a consumer receives daily has doubled to almost 7,000 per day.

New Models Say Goodbye to the Passive Shopper

A recent study by McKinsey & Co. – who are the first analysts to challenge the funnel model – found increasingly informed and empowered consumers will:

  • Start with narrower lists of product options and perceptions that are based on what is stored by the brain for later recall.
  • Expand the groups under consideration during a phase of active evaluation while paying attention to relevant advertising. They begin researching reviews and opinions on the Internet. Then they seek out recommendations and related experience from friends and family.
  • Be less methodical as previously thought – often entering a store with a much larger idea of possible options than the funnel-model offered.
  • Be less loyal than most marketers want to believe. Buyers are actively considering options during their post-purchase experience and can become very receptive to exposure to competition.

Custom Point-of-Purchase Displays: What You Need, When You Need It!

Market research reveals that custom point of purchase advertising offers a 2:1 advantage. In-store analysis is frequently performed and custom POP displays have been shown to deliver a 28% sales lift when compared to standardized designs and materials that generate a 13% lift. These results are consistent across multiple materials and messages.

Avante designs and manufactures custom point-of-purchase advertising displays directly from our factory. We work with well known companies such as Dish Network, Molson’s Brewery, Maytag/Crosley Appliances, JVC Electronics, Watkins, Body Glove, National Geographic, LG, and more.

If you have any questions or would like any further information about our point of purchase displays, please contact Avante Displays.

Phone: 1-877-407-8655
Email: or click here to request a copy of our brochure.