Why People Buy

Understanding why people buy your product or service is crucial. And here's the truth… people buy for their own specific reasons – usually not the reasons we think they are buying.

Why People Buy

The truth is, we can never be certain what the real reason is that someone buys our product or service. We might be able to hazard a guess, but because buying is an emotional decision, we will never know for sure.

The best possible research you can do for your business is to find out why your customers are buying whatever it is you are selling. Learn that reason. Know it well and let it guide your business in the future.

Worth reiterating: People buy for emotional reasons, logic only comes into play after the buying decision has already been made. In other words people buy because they want whatever they are buying, they use logic to justify their purchase. This includes everything from lattes to Learjets.

Question: What do you think about the idea of selling to people's emotions?

Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at RayEdwards.com.

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  • I agree with you that people do buy emotionally.  I also think that when selling a product that you tell a story of how a product helped you.  That can re-enforce an emotional feeling that a customer might have.  If a product worked for you and you feel better (so to speak), then they should buy that product and they will feel better.

  • Hi Ray,
    I’ve often heard it said in marketing circles that people buy only after they “Know,” “Like” and “Trust” you.   All three of these terms are highly emotionally charged.  To know someone implies a relationship has been established which is personal in nature.  To like is to actually enjoy the that personal relationship.  To Trust means to take that personal relationship to a level where you would accept the risk of investing time, money and energy with that person.  When that happens a sale becomes a point of pleasure for all involved which is also powerful emotion.
    So I would agree that emotion is a driver of sales, especially for non-essential purchases.
    I’m building a business to change the world!
    Be God’s
    Robert Miller

  • The customer probably won’t buy if they dislike me, but it’s most important that I relate a story of someone like them that got good results with my product. Who am I? just another huckster with another pint of snake oil. I’m paid to say good things about it. But someone else, someone like them, who got the results they are searching for – that’s the touchpoint that moves them from interest to belief.