Consumer type: which type of shopper are you?
Which type of shopper are you?

While shopping, consumers consider different aspects important. Some consumers consider it important to make deliberate purchases. Such consumer inspect all options before they come to a final decision. Other consumers find it enjoyable to walk through the shopping streets to see this years’ fashion. We investigated which type of consumers can be distinguished on the basis of their purchase and shopping behaviour.

Consumers were given all sorts of questions regarding their shopping and purchasing behaviour. For instance, whether they primarily focus on new and trendy products, whether they buy impulsively on a regular base, and whether they enjoy shopping (hedonic orientation). In addition, they were asked their opinions on advertising, whether they are brandfocussed and whether they ever felt uncertain while shopping (e.g. turning to friends to make a decision). We also investigated whether consumers assert their rights, for instance by returning a failing product (consumer empowerment) and whether consumers buy energy-efficient or organic products.

Eventually six different consumers groups were distinguished based on their purchase and shopping behaviour, namely: ‘Low Standard Shopping Avoiders’, ‘Impulsive Hedonics’, ‘Balanced Comparison Shoppers’, ‘Insecure Brand Loyals’, ‘Task Oriented Shoppers’ and the ‘Recreational Brand Seekers’. The table provides a brief explanation of each consumer type.



1. Low standard shopping avoiders (10.1%)

Mostly young men who do not see the benefit of an extensive search strategy based on product attributes to get to the ‘best product choice’. They rather settle with the first product they think will fulfill their needs to ‘just get it over with’.

2. Impulsive Hedonics (15.1%) 

Mostly young women who enjoy shopping and often have impulsive purchases. They like to purchase trendy and new products, preferably with a nice discount or for a low price.

3. Balanced Comparison Shoppers (13.9%)

Relatively older and confident consumers who enjoy making detailed product comparisons to end up with the best possible product (e.g. price quality) in the end.

4. Insecure Brand Loyals (14.6%)

Relatively young and lower educated consumers who are curious towards new products and trends. At the same time, they are often insecure while shopping, which leads them to purchase brands they are already familiar with or to ask advice from others.

5. Task Oriented Shoppers (30.0%)

Mostly older males with high education levels who do not enjoy the shopping activity itself. They are willing to invest time to evaluate the different product attributes to make a better purchase decision (in contrast to the low standards of cluster 1).

6. Recreational Brand Seekers (16.3%)

Mostly older self-confident women who value well-known (quality/more expensive) brands and pay less attention to prices of the products they buy.



The questionnaire on purchasing and shopping behaviour was administered to the LISSpanel, representative of the Dutch population, among 5995 Dutch respondents in March 2015. Based on a factor analysis on all questionnaire items, 10 factors were identified that were taken as a starting point for the cluster analysis. The cluster analysis examined whether and which consumer types within the LISSpanel can be distinguished.

This study was conducted by Jop Lavrijssen for his master thesis in Marketing Mangement. Jop was supervised by Roxanne van Giesen.

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