Why are men such bad shoppers?
Research released by life insurance expert Confused.com reveals that men across the UK are paying far more for their life insurance than women. Currently, men are paying an average of 26% more per policy, per year. To make matters worse, Confused.com reveals that ashocking 1 in 4 men never shop around for anything better.
"Men complain that women take too long shopping," says Matthew Lloyd, Head of Life insurance at Confused.com, "but men need to learn from women if they want to get the best deals - on life insurance, but also day to day items."
Why do men and women have different shopping styles?
According to evolutionary psychology, men and women's shopping behaviours are adapted from the traditional roles of men being hunters and women being gatherers. Men, the hunters, locate their item as quickly as possible, whereas women, the gatherers, spend timeanalysing the different items in order to get the best deal.
Men are happy to leave shopping to the last minute as they are shopping as a hunter would have - leaving the kill to the last minute to make sure the meat didn't go off. Women on the other hand, the gatherers, are more attuned to taking their time - in the olden days they would have been assessing the colour and texture of fruits.
Where is the evidence?
According to Confused.com research, these hunter / gatherer traits show especially when we are pushed for time, with convenience winning over cost.
Men fail to get the best bargains especially at Christmas, with 39% of women shopping for presents from January onwards, compared to nearly 1 in 5 (19%) of men who leave it until the week before, inevitably overspending.
And when clothes shopping, half of UK men (50%) take less than an hour to buy an outfit, whereas the majority of women (89%) actually take up to 5 hours. An overwhelming 78% of hunter men admit to buying clothes without trying them on first, compared to only 25% of women.
In the department store and supermarkets
As a quarter of men (24%) default to their favourite shop, 48% of women shop around, before making their final (and best) purchase online or in a sale. This is because the single minded hunter men don't like going from shop to shop - 42% buy their groceries in one store, compared to nearly half (49%) of gatherer women who go to several shops, seeking out the best deal.
In the sales
When it comes to shopping in the sales, men's aversion to shopping means that they are already lagging behind women's eye for a bargain with 23% of men preferring to shop in the sales compared to 31% of women.
Do men ever get it right?
Whereas nearly 1 in 3 men don't shop around for life insurance, there is one thing that they do shop around for. A car. Over 54% of men think that a car is the most important purchase to bargain hunt for, whereas the majority (32%) of women believe that it's a holiday that matters most. This is because hunter men prefer bigger ‘catches' - essentially objects they can see. Hundreds of years ago this would have been an antelope for dinner, these days it's a car.
Matthew Lloyd, Head of LifeInsurance at Confused.com continues: "Men are happy to spend the time shopping around for lifestyle purchases they perceive as important, such as a car or television, but life insurance doesn't seem worth the effort for many, however they could be saving money by doingso. Life insurance is about allowing your family to maintain their lifestyle if you were no longer around, and shopping with a price comparison site means you can compare prices from major providers in one place allowing you to find a good deal."