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Study: Snobby Staff May Make Average Shopper Buy To Feel Accepted

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — According to a new study, snobby staff at high-end stores may actually get consumers to pay more.

As 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported, the study soon to be released in the Journal of Consumer Research suggests that around a snooty worker, the very uncomfortable average shopper will tend to buy something so that they feel like they fit in.

However, some folks on Madison Avenue Friday said they are more likely to leave without buying anything if they feel uncomfortable in a luxury boutique or high-end store.

“I went into the Coach store in Chicago last week. I felt really, really uncomfortable in the store. So I wandered up to the top and I came right back down,” without buying anything, Lanida said.

“I just walk into Gucci or Chanel, I am a little intimidated. (Does it make you buy something that you might not ordinarily buy?) Not me. I buy because I want to,” Susan said.

Mary, who had just left the upscale French bakery Ladurée on Madison Avenue, said it wasn’t the employees at all who made her feel uncomfortable, but rather it was the other customers.

“It was more like the pressure of how many people were in line and how well dressed all the people were in line,” she said.

So Mary rationalized the line was much too long and left without purchasing anything.

Darnel, who said he works at an upscale store, said he also believes it’s the snobby customers, not the employees who make the average shopper uncomfortable in high-end stores.

“The employees are just regular people. It’s the clients who are the snooty ones, because they have the resources,” he said. “I think because of the store’s aesthetic it appears that we are snooty, but we’re totally not.”

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