As students, our consumer behaviour is super susceptible to discounts, and online platforms in particular offer an Aladdin’s Cave of deals. Though are these offers always that helpful, or are they sometimes encouraging us to spend excessively? Let’s explore why students are the perfect target for brands, and how we can be aware of their tricks so we can use them to our advantage, rather than be fooled into over-spending.
As a fresher, many of you will think you have multiple reasons to go shopping, and brands know this market. You’re new at university, you go shopping with your new housemates to bond, and many of your pockets are stuffed with student loans or the bank of Mum and Dad. You might also be looking for some homesick induced retail-therapy, and are super keen to look the part. You need to pop to Wilko for some washing up liquid, and you may as well have a look around the shops while you’re there. Shopping also feels like a mission, and much like going to the gym or doing your flatmates’ washing up, it’s a great activity to make you feel productive while you avoid studying. On top of all this, there is a constant bombardment of eye-catching discounts and deals.
Most of these deals are time-limited and encourage panic buying. If you’re more aware of the methods brands use, you’ll be more able to navigate them, and use them to your benefit.
- Timing. Mass student deals (20% discount, free delivery etc.) will always be issued when student loans role out. This tactic doesn’t need explaining. Remember, you’ve still got to eat for the rest of the term.
- Student Lock In Events: Trinity Student Social, 1st October 2019, 12:00-20:00. Trinity Centre’s stores and restaurants offer limited-time discounts and freebies. A useful event to take advantage of if you know what you want to buy (plus who can’t say no to a freebie), but also be aware that the buzz of a social event and allure of 20% instead of the usual 10% discount does wonders to encourage panic buys.
- Free Delivery and Returns. You only need to walk down to reception to collect shopping, and the clothes were cheap, so you probably won’t be returning them if they aren’t right anyway.
- Black Friday. Not so specific to students, but a good one to be aware of. It’s getting colder and you need warmer clothes, and you think you may as well buy everyone’s christmas presents while they’re cheap.
Sometimes you can spend money to save money, but keep in mind that when you’re getting a good deal, you’re still spending money. Love what you already have, and think about what you really want and really need before being pressured to ‘buy it now’.