Author: Izabela Szkaradek
Publication date: 03.11.2023
What is Impulse Buying?
Making unplanned purchases, also known as impulse buying, can have negative consequences on your finances. This happens whether it's a small or significant amount. In fact, such a behavior appears in different contexts, for instance in-store shopping or online platforms. To overcome this habit, it's crucial to recognize it, understand the different types of impulses, and use strategies to regain control over spending.
The Reasons Why We Make Impulse Purchases
Emotion-driven impulse purchases are quite common, particularly when it comes to online shopping. The immediate pleasure that comes with making impulsive buys satisfies our desire for instant gratification, which is a powerful motivator. Actually, emotions play a significant role in driving these decisions. Marketers often capitalize on this phenomenon by using persuasive techniques to influence our shopping behavior. It is important to be aware of these triggers to avoid overspending.
How to Stop Impulsive Spending
Managing impulsive buying requires various approaches with different ways to deal with the issue. There are five significant methods that can help with overcoming this problem.
Give Yourself Some Time
To overcome impulse buying, it is important to take a step back before making a purchase. Give yourself at least 24 hours to reflect on whether the item you want is something you truly need. This waiting period gives you the chance to evaluate the value the item would bring. It also helps you distinguish between genuine needs and passing desires. By making it a habit to reconsider your decision after a day or two, you may find that the impulse fades away.
Plan Your Budget And Savings
It is not always possible to completely eliminate unplanned purchases from your budget. However, you can still manage your spending by allocating a small amount for occasional spontaneous shopping. This way, you can accommodate unforeseen needs or desires without sabotaging your financial plans. So, it’s important to create a budget and track your expenses to keep better control and reduce impulsive spending.
Go Shopping With a Plan
To avoid overspending on shopping trips, whether online or in stores, it's crucial to create a plan beforehand. For example, it should include your budget and the specific items you intend to purchase. By having a clear idea of what you need, you can avoid getting sidetracked by impulse. Additionally, it is helpful to do some research on the prices and quality of the products you are interested in. Thanks to that, you can make informed decisions.
Remember Your Financial Goals
Maintaining a focus on your long-term financial objectives is a highly effective method for preventing impulsive spending. It can help you realize that such a purchase might impede paying off debts or saving money. You can also set up visual reminders, such as a vision board or notes posted in visible locations to remember about your financial goals.
Find Support If You Need It
Overcoming impulsive spending is often more successful with support. Regularly checking in with someone, focused on financial health, can provide valuable feedback. It is also worth considering consulting a financial therapist or joining a support group to gain control over impulsive buying. Sharing experiences with others facing similar challenges can provide additional encouragement.