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Men Shop As Hunters, Women As Gatherers

According to recent research from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, “the differences in shopping styles of men and women are as primitive as hunter vs. gatherer,” said Paula Courtney, president of the Verde Group, which conducted the random study of 1,205 telephone interviews with Wharton’s J.H. Baker Retail Initiative. When men shop they are on a mission. Get in. Get out as quickly as possible. When women shop, the tend to look around, talk to sales associates and just enjoy the journey, the experience of shopping. They touch the clothes, smell the perfume, try on cosmetics. They want and need attention.

The study is called,

“Men buy, women shop.”

The study also found that:

  • Men are more task oriented
  • Women are more concerned with relationships and engagement
  • Women’s number one issue was not being able to find help when they needed it
  • Men’s biggest headache was…Parking

Still, the summary of the study shows that women are the shopping queens. According to WomenCertified, a women’s consumer advocacy and training organization that also was involved in the study, WOMEN spend $4 trillion annually, which accounts for 83% of U.S. consumer spending.


Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

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