When I tell people that my job is studying women’s shopping patterns, you can’t imagine the jokes I hear. Most of them revolve around the stereotype that women have an insatiable appetite for shoes, handbags and sparkly things. Oh, if only it were so simple, I say. And then I bring down the hammer and tell them the real reason women shop so much. That’s when the jokes stop and the conversation gets a lot more interesting.
After all, understanding why women buy is the first step to gaining their business.
The real reason is sobering. In virtually every society in the world, women have primary care-giving responsibilities for both children and the elderly (and often, just about everybody else in-between). In this primary caregiving role, women find themselves buying on behalf of everyone else in their lives.
The list is long: in addition to buying for themselves, women buy on behalf of husbands, partners, kids, colleagues, adult children, friends, relatives, elderly parents, in-laws, their businesses and even their kids’ friends, to name just a few. If somebody, somewhere needs a gift, chances are there’s a woman thinking about it; tracking it down; wrapping it; making sure it’s accompanied by a personal message and then arriving to the person on the appointed day. I sometimes think entire industries would collapse overnight if women stopped being so thoughtful. Consider the impact to the greeting card industry alone.
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Source: BB Wix

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