Bigger is always better, right?
We love our big houses, huge SUVs, dinner portions that could feed a small village, and paper towel packages containing 4,688 rolls. Ok, that last one was a bit excessive, but you get the point. In the U.S. we love everything bigger.
This has now spilled over into our buying habits, as buying everything in bulk is now a major trend. Why? It’s because we are all addicted to it – there is a certain satisfaction that comes with buying batteries in a pack of 50, and having enough hand soap to last 7.5 years.
Costco and BJ’s Started the Trend
Back in the day there was only one option if you wanted to buy in bulk and that was to join a discount membership club. Costco and BJ’s were the major players and it was where you went if you wanted a 5 gallon tub of peanut butter or enough soda to give the entire block diabetes.
They paved the way and they were onto something before we all knew that we needed everything in big ridiculous quantities. Now it seems we can buy bulk everywhere, including regular supermarkets and online.
Subscription Incentives for Auto-Billing are Catching On
A lot of companies understand that the average consumer is addicted to bulk and even if they can’t offering a bulk purchase at once, they push an auto re-bill.
This way the customer doesn’t have to think twice. They get a reshipment at the interval of their choice, generally saving money selecting this, and the company can count on a repeat order. It’s a smart play. They are building up their recurring revenue and the customer gets hassle free shopping for the things the use the most.
Stock Piling Necessities is Common Practice
Some of the items that perform very well as bulk purchases shouldn’t surprise you. They are common necessities that we go through quickly and often.
Paper towels. Laundry detergent. Any household items, really.
Also, any food items that can be stored dry or frozen. We love big quantities and we love saving money. And the companies understand this and have adjusted accordingly.
When you buy surplus you aren’t really wasting money, as you would eventually need the items again. Over time you are saving money and if you can afford to front the money it’s an intelligent move.
E-Commerce is Adapting
The entire e-commerce world is jumping on this trend and you will often see single-item stores push huge bulk offers. Take a weight loss supplement for example or a multi-vitamin.
Let’s assume a 30-day supply is $50. They will offer the single bottle sale, but they will also offer a 3-month supply, a 6-month supply and even larger quantities. They discount the bottles heavily in order to entice the up-sell.
If a customer takes it on a regular basis he or she sees that as a major value. They are going to spend the $50 per month regardless, so why not buy 6 at a time if it drops the price down to $30 per bottle and a $20 savings per bottle over time.
It’s a trend we will see more and more from e-commerce companies, especially in the health and fitness industry.