3.2.7 Consumer society in 2015
It could be argued that many of the money-saving tips you’ve discussed have arisen as a result of social and economic changes in the UK in recent decades. Some, such as being able to shop around for a cheaper internet or phone company, reflect the increased competition in certain sectors of the economy, with more suppliers available in the marketplace. Others, such as thinking about the cost of gym membership or cutting down on takeaways, reflect the increased focus in the media on healthy lifestyles. Technological change is also important with reference to mobile phones, buying online and comparing prices online.
The consumer society and the behavioural factors that drive spending decisions – which you looked at earlier this week when you examined ‘heuristics’ – are relevant when considering the motives behind buying certain branded items. The list of money-saving tips is particularly interesting because it highlights how social and economic changes can both increase household expenditure through more choice and pressure to buy, yet at the same time provide ways in which expenditure can be reduced.