Book Review: Inside The Mind of The Shopper

In the world of shopper insights there are two preeminent figures namely, Paco Underhill the author of “Why We Buy” and Herb Sorensen, the author of “Inside The Mind of the Shopper”.

I recently finished reading Mr. Sorensen’s book and it took me on a fabulous journey through the retail environment and how shoppers made purchase (or not to purchase) decisions in the store.

When you think about it, this is critical information for both suppliers and retailers as without triggering the purchase decision in-store neither of our businesses would exist.

Sorensen has decades of experience in understanding shopper and his work highly complements that of Underhill. Indeed, the work done by Sorensen is much more advanced including the use of high tech shopper tracking solutions, many of which he invented to facilitate his research.

The book is written in such a way to give actionable insights to both retailers and suppliers on how they can increase the chance to put more products in the shopper’s basket.

For retailers, he debunks the long standing notice that price is the king of promotion, offers unique ideas on how to manage SKU sprawl and highlights the importance of “short trip” shoppers.

For suppliers, he encourages a clear focus on the key top-selling items in our assortment (less really is more) and to focus on breaking through the retail clutter with product packaging and POP material that truly has stopping power.

With up to 80% of final purchasing decisions being made in-store this is an essential read for those in shopper facing roles such as category management and shopper insights. It is also a great investment for retail buyers, store operations, key account managers, marketers and senior management.


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