Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Differences between American and Indian Shopping Habits

I received monetary compensation for publishing this guest post. The links in this post lead to content not produced or sponsored by me and may not reflect my views and opinions. 
 
Just about everything in American and Indian cultures is different, especially where shopping habits are concerned! So, where to begin? 
 
One possibility would be with regard to the personal shopping assistance that sales people in North America provide, where customer service is (or once was) a given. Another possible place to start would be with an explanation of the culture clash (shock!) that Americans seem to experience when they aren’t able to locate their favourite products, fast foods, and (gasp) local Starbucks! :)
Could it be the way in which Indian consumers seem to be far more comfortable buying from local markets rather than supermarkets, grocery stores, and malls? And finally, is it possible that Americans by nature invest more time trying to locate the best prices, discounts, coupons, and sales?
All of the above reasons are definite possibilities… so let’s take a look at some of the major differences.

Shopping in India:
Shopping in India is usually a family event. Simple observation makes this clear; India is one of the countries least likely to jump on the ‘mall culture’ bandwagon. The desire to shop with family members seems to outweigh the international trend to social-shop and browse fashion outlets with friends. It’s not uncommon to ask for family or friend’s recommendations for purchases before making a purchasing decision.
Additionally, approximately one person in eight reports wearing the same clothing to work, social events, and while out-and-about, decreasing the need for a vast assortment of outfits suitable for every occasion. Only 1 in 4 even feel the need to buy ‘designer’ brands… most Indians care little for name brands. The majority of consumers in India are inclined to buy new clothes most frequently for special events and special occasions, but not otherwise.
Interestingly, with the increase in internet connection and the growth of the Indian middle class, all these trends seem to be evolving slowly amongst the younger generation, since nearly half of the population finds international merchandise superior to local brands. As the economy of the nation develops, so do key indicators in the population like an increase in opening bank accounts, making credit card purchases through Amex India, financing homes through mortgage payments and more.

Shopping in the USA:
While recent economic stressors have caused United States citizens to curtail their spending sprees, Americans still love to shop. The majority of patrons consider shopping to be a social event as well as a recreational activity, particularly when it comes to buying clothes and browsing. 
 
While discount chains are feeling the strain, online e-commerce sites like Amazon are seeing an increasing rise in consumerism, especially during the holiday seasons. An increasing number of citizens are shopping online, with virtual shopping on the rise by about 10%. Fewer shoppers are stopping by the local shops and malls, yet Americans continue to enjoy trending fashions, designer brands, accessories, tech/apps, and items that are designed to suit a wide variety of occasions.
While excellent service was once a trademark of most American retailers, recent trends and lack of resources have given way to speed shopping and online ‘carts’. However, Americans still appreciate their favourite products, the tried and the true! The majority of shopping in the United States consists of a trek to one of several mega-stores along with… let’s hear it… a quick cup of cappuccino and a snack at the local Starbucks! By contrast, India is still steeped in tradition with consumer trends lagging behind their deep appreciation for family and tradition.

*This is a sponsored guest post however, I have personally used AmEx credit cards and was impressed by their level of attentiveness to security and protection of consumer information. As a private investigator, I can assure you they are the best card for those who don't want their information tampered with, stolen, misused, etc. I feel confident this post is a great addition to my blog and beneficial to my beloved readers. 

40 comments:

  1. I never really realized there were any differences, so I found this interesting. I love to shop and wish I had more money to do it!

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  2. Interesting read although i hate shopping

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  3. This was neat to read. I've never thought about the differences before in ppl's shopping habits but its interesting. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Terry My Journey With CandidaApril 8, 2014 at 11:47 AM

    I am a shop till I drop kind of girl... But sometimes I run out of money first. I would like to shop India so I can learn the differences first hand.

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  5. This was very interesting! It's fun to see the differences of certain cultures!

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  6. I do all of my shopping online. The convenience suits our family lifestyle.

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  7. I live in the UK and I love a good bargain, but I also like to look around markets and local stores too

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  8. I would LOVE to be able to shop more local markets!! It's not readily available where I live. I shop with my kids all the time but sometimes I really like to not have them hanging all over me when I'm looking for something. :)

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  9. Interesting. I guess difference is what make the world a great place to live.

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  10. I am unlike most Americans, apparently--- I HATE to go shopping! Malls suck and I love my Amazon account.

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  11. I absolutely love shopping! I love unique stuff too so I don't think I could deal with the fact that one out of eight people wear the same outfit.

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  13. I like shopping in any situation - groups, alone, online, off line. Too bad I don't have the budget to shop as much as I'd like!

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  14. Onica {MommyFactor}April 9, 2014 at 12:14 PM

    Really interesting to learn how another cultures shops. The shopping experience is so much more for other cultures outside the USA.

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  15. I love shopping! We actually have an AmEx but my hubby is the one in charge of it since I'm really bad when it comes to spending!

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  16. Interesting that it's a family event in India. Most of my shopping is done by myself and online!

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  17. I'm not a big shopping person but when I do, I prefer to shop with my husband. I always find a reason to talk myself out of buying something.

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  18. Oh I know just what you mean. Kids can wear you down really quickly when shopping.

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  19. I don't have the shopping budget I would like to have either. It's such a pity. I think I could really do my duty to reviving the economy if I did. ;)

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  20. I love shopping! I find it very therapeutic. I stick to a strict budget though and live in Canada so we do not have those super low prices like our american neighbours lol (Kim)

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  21. This is so interesting. I know when I am by myself I tend to splurge more then if I am shopping with my family

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  22. Shopping in Spain was very much a family event too. Maybe the European influence in India has a lot to do with it.

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  23. I am not a huge shopper either. I shop (other than grocery shopping) when I need to only.

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  24. Now I understand why my Canadian friends like to come down here to the US to shop. I didn't realize we were cheaper.

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  25. There was at time when shopping was unthinkable and need based resorted to only in times of dire need. I remember the annual shopping before festivals. Clothes were invariably stitched. I spent my entire childhood wearing stitched trousers and shirts.


    There is one anecdote which my friend told about the shopping in his family. They were two sisters and one brother. Shopping for all of them was expensive. So, his father used to buy several metres of one cloth and get their clothes stitched. All the children used to end up looking the same. Very cost effective and efficient. I think most families then managed things like that. The younger sibling wore clothes of the older sibling and used his books and stuff. Today, we buy clothes, shoes etc left right and centre.

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  26. I love to shop, just not grocery shopping!

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  27. As much as I hate shopping maybe I should move to India.

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  28. So interesting. I don't wear fashion forward clothes. I get them usually from garage sales. I wear the same clothes to work a lot. Maybe I got misplaced when I was young. Thanks for the info

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  29. I love this! I had the privilege of spending some time in India during college in 2005 and LOVED it. I'm also one of those "family shoppers". I prefer to shop with the entire family- we are, each of us, eating all of the food after all so why not make the purchase together!?

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  30. I guess the bottom line is that people of all cultures like to shop!

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  31. I must share this with a friend who will be visiting India! So very interesting.

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  32. I agree, shopping is more fun with other people around. After all, how can you know which colors and styles truly look best on you without at least one more opinion?

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  33. You would like the bazaars in India then. Clothing is inexpensive, beautiful and custom made to fit you perfectly.

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  34. I find it interesting 1 in 4 in India care about designer brands - that's still a high percentage. I personally love that shopping in India is more of a family event.

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  35. We are definitely have too much consumerism. In the countries I've been to it's usually all outdoor markets. It seems inconvenient to us, when you could go to a supermarket with everything neatly placed in the aisles.

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  36. At first it does appear inconvenient but everything you need is in those outdoor markets and usually much cheaper.

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  37. Yeah, I don't care much for design labels, I only look for quality as well.

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  38. So Nice and Interesting. There are many difference in Indian and American peoples shopping habits. In India people mostly like to go at mall for shopping and American still loves to spend a time on online shopping. Thanks for sharing a very nice info with us.

    Online Shopping

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