Change Your Shopping Habits: How to Buy Less 144

change your shopping habits, buy less

Have you ever asked yourself why you buy a certain thing?

If not, now is the right time.

I can’t even imagine how big the amount of money spent by big corporations is on marketing researches, statistics and learning everything about the client’s behavior.

Without knowing what it is that provokes a purchase, how spontaneous ones happen, what makes us choose one brand over another, how a customer becomes loyal and what stimulus affect us while deciding whether to buy it or not, companies won’t be able to have this big influence on our shopping habits.

The result is:
we buy more than we need;
• we end up buying stuff only because it’s at a discount (although otherwise we would never even consider getting it at the first place);
• we shop spontaneously;
the more things we buy, the more we want;
• we get into debt;
• our house is full of useless belongings;
• we don’t appreciate what we’ve bought;
• we never make full use of it.

So now it becomes a problem.

We often buy because of the influence of ads, the Internet, friends or else. Or because we’ve just seen the item somewhere and have been craving it ever since.
Then we need something to go with it. We may even buy a few of it – you know, just in case.

After our second purchase from the same shop we receive a discount there or a client’s card. Our email is full of information about sales and promotions. They offer big gifts and services if we buy a certain thing now.

Soon we found ourselves in a room, full of stuff we never thought we would own. That is the vicious circle of today’s market.
It’s well thought-out and has massive incomes. And will continue doing it until we take control over out shopping habits and become aware of what we buy.

The first step is to be able to make a difference between wants and needs. We often mix them and that’s why we fall into this trap.
You need to carefully think of how often you buy something because you actually need it.

Here is what you can do in order to check if your desire to have a certain good is real and whether it’s worth buying.
When you see something you want, ask these questions:

1. What will you use it for?
2. Is it worth the price?
3. Do you think it’s good enough to own it for good?
4. Will you still want it that bad in a week or a month?
5. How will it improve your life?
6. Is it only a whim?

Shopping with limits

The solution lies in mindfulness – the ability to buy consciously, slowly and wisely.

This way you’ll be aware of what you spend your money on, will be able to decide whether you really need it in your life and be happy with the decision.
You will also manage to ignore all the distractions and influences around you.

And here are some things to consider if you want to buy less:

• don’t go to shopping centers or local shops if you don’t need something new – the temptations there are hard to resist;
• do it consciously – ask yourself the questions you just read;
• always carry with you a shopping list and stick to it;
• when you buy something new, get rid of something old. This is the only way to keep the balance.;
• avoid being exposed to ads – unsubscribe from all the sites sending you offers, stop watching TV, ignore your friends’ recommendations of the products they use;
• keep a record of what you’re buying. It really helps as it makes you see the big picture;
• tell your family and friends to keep track of your shopping and interfere if it gets out of control;
buy only to replace broken and damaged stuff, worn out clothes and shoes;
• when you go out, don’t take a lot of money with you;
• if you need something for a while, consider borrowing it;
• try to live without most of the new things you want.

These simple tricks can help you become more aware of your actions when you’re out shopping.

Do you have a problem with buying stuff you don’t need? How do you feel after that?
And what other tricks can you think of that will help us change our shopping habits?

See also:

50 tips for grocery shopping
Breaking free from consumerist chains
Love life, not stuff
The intelligent man’s guide to consumerism: The confused customer
Take the fear of compulsion out of shopping
12 ways to become a more rational shopper

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The 5 Most Popular Ways to Make Money on Instagram 21

The 5 Most Popular Ways to Make Money on Instagram

It’s possible to not only make money on Instagram but to even turn this into the biggest asset for your business.

Of course, every item on the list below means you’ll first need to build a following and then monetize it in a way you find best for your strategic goals. But once you have an audience, you attract even more people. And what’s more, they are all more engaged than on any other platform online.

Some individuals and businesses are making a fortune solely on Instagram, but it’s taken them some trial and error to get there.

So, let’s find your best option to cash in on this social media channel:

How to Make Money on Instagram

1. Affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing is an option for almost anyone that has control over a platform online. With it, you simply redirect people to another person’s products or services and earn a commission for each sale.

Just like you can do this with your blog by writing reviews or linking to products from your sidebar, and with your email newsletter where you can encourage subscribers to give something a try, you can also use social media to promote an affiliate URL.

With Instagram, that can happen mainly by making the link in your bio point to an affiliate page. Then growing your audience with the hope that many followers will be clicking on it.

But to make the most out of the visual side of Instagram, post beautiful images or even image quotes depending on the type of product or service you promote. Use the description to encourage people to click the link in your bio.

Of course, you’ll need to be targeting the right people. Those that are interested in the niche and the products you’re trying to sell. Also, you’ll have to be making the most of the hashtags related to this field.

2.  Sponsored content.

Next, you can make money on Instagram by publishing sponsored posts.

Once you have a big following that’s engaged, you can start mentioning other products, brands or Instagram accounts.

That shouldn’t be aggressive, though, as users can easily feel when you’re getting too promotional and will quickly unfollow you. So make sure you keep your posting schedule consistent and stick to your overall strategy, but begin publishing a sponsored post every now and then and let it blend into your feed.

For example, some popular Instagram accounts who publish inspiring quotes and motivational content often repost someone else’s post. Or even publish a screenshot of another profile, and use the caption or description to mention it so that people can follow it directly.

This way the other person’s content and account get exposure and you get paid for that.

And if that doesn’t sound lucrative enough to you, let’s think in numbers. With a big enough following, some Instagrammers are charging hundreds or even thousands of dollars for posting a single picture with a mention of a brand or a product on it.

3.  Sell your stuff.

That’s an obvious one, but worth mentioning.

Make money on Instagram by using all the content you post on your account to motivate people to click the link in your bio, where they’ll be presented with your best offer.

That can be your latest book, your membership site, your store on Etsy, your business services, or else.

In this case, your goal will be one: to turn more followers into customers.

Of course, you can also link to your blog or podcast, but here we’re talking about direct ways to monetize Instagram.

4. License your photos.

How to Use Your iPhone to Take Good Travel Photos

You don’t need to be a photographer, but if you’re making great pictures anyways, you might as well get paid to do that.

Many businesses or individuals can’t create their own photos but are looking for inspiring images to go together with their content. If you’re a travel enthusiast, for instance, or a foodie who loves to plate your food like a pro, let your Instagram account be the place to put all that inspiration online.

Add a watermark to each photo and use the caption, description and link in bio to let people know where they can buy the photos.

There are actually 2 great marketplaces where you can put your Instagram photos up for sale. That’s Foap and Twenty20.

5. Sell your account.

A less popular, but highly lucrative option is to invest resources to grow an account and then sell it. That’s not against the rules, of course, and is for people who aren’t promoting their own business or brand, and who are simply doing it for the money.

It’s similar to flipping sites.

You can use ViralAccounts – a platform for selling and buying viral social media accounts.

So, I think there ways to make money on Instagram are enough to get you started and let you create your strategy and start building your following.

How will you monetize your account and why?