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How Weather Affects Your Customers’ Wallet
  • 20 February 2019
  • Jelani Markus

How Weather Affects Your Customers’ Wallet

If you are curious about what kind of sales day you are going to have, the answer might be found on your weather app. Weather is known to be one of the strongest external drivers on purchases and demand. A consumer’s emotional state may influence their purchasing decisions and how much they are willing to spend. And everyone can agree that a big impact on your emotional state is the weather.

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Understanding the relationship between spending patterns and weather patterns can help you maximize your marketing strategies as well as benefit your bottom line. To get a better grasp, it’s important to understand how weather affects product demand, purchase channels and mood for your buyers. Let’s take a closer look:

1. Product demand based on weather

When you think of your small business, think about how weather affects it. Identifiable trigger points are drilled down to a science. Warm weather swings the demand for cold drinks and garden furniture for people who want to spend time outdoors. While those examples may sound typical, weather conditions largely shape a variety of products, even those that you might not think are conditioned by the weather. Purchases large and small across categories may see demand direction shift based on weather. A convertible looks much more attractive in the summer, as does a 4x4 in the winter. Many people have an innate “projection bias” that influences the decisions made given the current situation. Capitalize on this with a marketing plan built around such behavior. Try contextualizing weather-based social media messaging using geo-targeting. The right message and the right temperature could be just the thing to get consumers walking through the door.

2. Weather affects where they buy

When it is warm and sunny, people are more likely to get outside to visit brick-and-mortar locations. If it’s snowing or storming, online traffic increases. But it can go deeper as seasonality, industry and product choices factor in. Cold and rainy weather boosts sales of clothing, furniture and home goods for online retailers by 12 percent compared to warmer days. Keep your industry in mind when considering how weather impacts your product sales as well as how consumers will choose to reach you to make purchases. When you know customers are more likely to be online, that is the perfect time to increase online marketing and drive traffic in your direction.

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3. A maximized mood can lead to more spending

Often sticker shock has less significance on customers when they are in a good mood, and — as you have read previously — weather has a big impact on mood. Simple exposure to sunlight can dramatically increase credit card spending. With consumers willing to spend more when exposed to sunlight, it is no wonder many retailers invest in bright halogen lights to mimic the sun’s effects in stores. Mood is so closely tied to weather that even a snowfall in late October could boost pre-Christmas sales. If it looks and feels like Christmas, consumers will behave that way. This “seasonal feeling” can also be manufactured for different times of year. Think about what you can do to your small business environment to trigger happy, purchase-prone customers.

Knowing about the three biggest ways weather can affect your small business can be a key component in your future success. And when it comes to your success, The UPS Store® will always be here if you have questions or concerns. And don’t worry: you’ll find locations open rain or shine.

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