Buyers’ regret is a well understood phenomenon in business. A customer purchases a product, then immediately begins checking to see if it were available cheaper, or if a better product exists. The final outcome? “I shouldn’t have bought it!”
Non-buyers’ regret is when you have the opportunity to buy something, decide not to, then regret it after. Today, I had the chance to buy something I really didn’t need, probably couldn’t afford, and maybe wouldn’t use very often. The price was higher than I was willing to go.
I regret every aspect of my decision! Why? My decision was logical, well thought out, based on a proper cost-benefit analysis, and appropriate. That’s obviously why I hate it so much.
And, you might ask, what does that make me?
Excellent, thought-provoking post, Steve. You call it “non-buyers regret,”
others might call it remorse, and my WASP and Jewish friends are sure to call it in me Catholic guilt. And, I have a rather bright and wealthy millennial
friend who would say I’m just old and existing as a “post-depression” be-ing
and no, I’m not a rose by any other name.
But…here’s the syndrome. Persons like me–and perhaps like you and many others–will buy a gift for another that we will think long and hard–and perhaps not spend the money on ourselves. Yup, we will deprive ourselves of the same item we will readily buy for someone else. What’s up with that?