Klarna (Klarna Bank AB), the Swedish bank providing services including payment solutions, has launched its new product offering called KlarnaSense. It has come at an excellent time considering the current COVID-19 crisis. This new offering has been created in order to urge consumers to make better shopping decisions by purchasing the right products at just the right time – and being smart about it.
Mindful shopping is the key concept with KlarnaSense. Do you need that item? Can you wait to buy that item? Do you absolutely love the item? Can you get it elsewhere for a more affordable price? Will you get a lot of use out of it? Does it suit you? Will your family get use out of it? Will you get your money’s worth out of the item? Is it worth it? These of just some of the implied questions that will be challenging consumers before they make a purchasing decision, especially a large one.
Klarna has incorporated the use of retail psychology into KlarnaSense as a way to help its customers be more conscious when out shopping or shopping online. KlarnaSense has been created on the premise that the average human brain processes a massive amount – around 11 million pieces – of information each and every second when making decisions. It seems like an inordinate amount, but it all happens on a subconscious level without us even realising. Impulse buying exists due to this vast amount of information being processed extremely fast, and many of the actual decisions made are usually not considered ones.
Based on applying the Rule of Three, developed by retail psychologist, Kate Nightingale, KlarnaSense is set to ensure that consumers make use of the part of their brain in control of decision making – and will assist in helping to make a thought out decision instead of an impulsive one. The Rule of Three was developed to help shoppers find a balance and a way to switch on the conscious brain to avoid impulse buys. The secret is to ask oneself, 1. “Do I love it?” 2. “Will I use it?” 3. “Is it worth it?”.
During these eerily strange times, COVID-19 is not only having an impact on the general economy but also on our psychology. For some it is causing light anxiety, for some it is causing them to have full blown panic attacks. Some have even been quoted in the news saying that they get extreme anxiety the night before they know they need to go out to the shops. For others, shopping, whether in the form of food, clothing, shoes, sporting goods, cars or even the latest tech gadgets is what they term “retail therapy”. After lockdown, and when lockdown has begun easing, people are going out again, going to their favourite stores and wanting a retail therapy fix. Anything to lift the spirits. These are the people that KlarnaSense aims to help.
Klarna’s growth within Europe and the UK has meant that these types of initiatives that are becoming increasingly necessary as consumers become gradually more demanding when it comes to their shopping experiences in the current climate. Stores are also running massive sales to ramp up their turnovers after the closures during lockdown, enticing consumers to make purchases they probably would not have usually made. Enticing sales plus shoppers needing to feel as though things are back to normal equals a match made in spending heaven. But also, a match made in debt hell.
KlarnaSense will aim to modify consumer behaviours for the better, and empower them to make good decisions based on their specific situations, whether online or in store. The ability to spread the cost of larger, more expensive purchases over a period of time will also be of great help to consumers in the ever changing retail environment. Klarna works with more than 6,500 retail partners and this is a huge win for them. Klarna’s United Kingdom general manager, Luke Griffiths, said that spreading the cost of purchases to provide much needed flexibility and convenience is what people need right now. They want to play a significant role in helping their customers to make the best choices and that is what KlarnaSense is all about.