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For What It’s Worth

6/04/2009 09:23:00 AM

Here is a little info that I will label “For What It’s Worth.”

 

Parks Associates came out with a study indicating the higher a person’s educational level and salary, the more he will spend on a PC or laptop. That seems pretty obvious, but the more interesting take-away point in the study, to me at least, was this:

 

“The prices consumers pay for PCs and laptops are remarkably elastic, especially when compared to products such as DVD players, game consoles, and home networks, where prices are basically flat across different income and educational groups,” said John Barrett, director, research, Parks Associates. “These results allow us to measure the impact of specific consumer attributes, such as level of education, and use that to predict both the products consumers are interested in and how much they’ll pay for certain items.”

 

For example, Barrett says, higher-income households would be more willing to pay a little extra for a better laptop, whereas they see less value in paying extra for a high-end DVD player. As a result, high- and low-income households pay basically the same for a DVD player.

 

I suppose part of the answer to this is a DVD player is a DVD player is a DVD player. Whereas there are dozens of types of laptops, some of which will do more or less than others, so there is a reason to spend more or less for a computer product.

 

What I wonder is what does a sales associate have to do to get a customer, who say makes $50,000, to spend the same amount as a wealthier person for a computer? Is it possible to pull an extra few bucks out of them?

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