Summary of Why We Buy

The Science of Shopping

Simon & Schuster, more...

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Why We Buy book summary
You might think that your last purchase was an impulse buy, but someone worked very hard to create that impulse.


9 Overall

8 Applicability

9 Innovation

9 Style


In Why We Buy, Paco Underhill reveals key principles that he and his company, Envirosell, have learned about shopping. He discusses what different types of customers see, and how they respond. He has more than 20 years experience observing some 50,000 to 70,000 shoppers a year in stores, banks, and public offices. This is an exciting, original book. It is sharply written, with a dynamic style. Underhill provides generous examples of what he and his team of trackers have learned by observing shoppers. He includes interesting anecdotes and statistics showing how shoppers behave under different circumstances. This is both a solid, carefully researched book and a joy to read. getabstract recommends the book to everyone in retail.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why retailers must consider all shoppers – men and women, children and senior citizens – when creating a shopping environment
  • Why poor service will undo good merchandise, price and location every time
  • Why the Internet shopping experience must offer easy navigation and plenty of information


The Science of Shopping
Paco Underhill’s understanding about shoppers is the result of more than 20 years of careful observation and data collection. He approaches it like an anthropologist studying another culture, through participant observation and carefully noting dozens of pieces of...
Get the key points from this book in less than 10 minutes.

About the Author

Paco Underhill  is the founder and director of Envirosell, a company devoted to analyzing shopping behavior. He has numerous corporate clients, including McDonald’s, Starbucks, Estee Lauder, Blockbuster, Citibank and Wells Fargo. He has written for many publications, including American Demographics and Adweek, and lectures widely.

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