“4K or Not 4K?” Is Not the Question: New TV Path-to-Purchase Study Shows Buyers Are More Interested in Price and Size than Technology and Features

In the run-up to Black Friday, InfoScout, the leader in real-time
shopper insights, reveals surprising results from a new survey of 840
recent TV buyers.

America’s richest source of consumer purchase data, has released the
results of a new study that shows that despite TV makers’ hype over the
latest technologies and features heading into the holiday shopping
season, most TV buyers are not persuaded by product and brand
differentiation messages during their path to purchase. For the great
majority of buyers, finding a TV at the right price point and size far
outweigh other considerations.

Among the survey’s most surprising revelations, buyers said that for 79
percent of TV purchases, they either did not have a preferred brand in
mind immediately before making a purchase, or they changed their mind
after walking into the store. Only 26 percent said features such as 4K
resolution or Smart TV functionality were important to their purchase

“The findings should come as a shock, or perhaps a wake-up call to
marketers,” said Bob Goodwin, practice leader for consumer technology
for InfoScout. “While it’s true that TV buyers are doing more research
than ever, they are still largely undecided right up until the point of
purchase. At first blush, this would seem counterintuitive – until you
dig deeper into the buying process.

“The data indicate that buyers are not seeing a huge difference in
picture quality when they compare TVs in store. Picture quality has
become very good across the board. So consumers end up making their
decision based on whether the TV fits their wall and fits their wallet,”
Goodwin said.

The study, “Understanding
the Path to Purchase for Television Buyers
,” provides an in-depth
analysis of buyers’ experiences, behaviors and thought processes
throughout the purchasing journey, and how they affect the customer’s
purchase decision and satisfaction. It is based on a survey of 840
consumers who purchased a TV within a recent 60-day period.

The survey’s key findings include:

  • Just one in five TV buyers – 21 percent – purchase the brand they
    intended to purchase when they walk into the store. The rest either
    don’t have a specific brand in mind, or change their mind after they
    enter the store.
  • Product features, such as 4K resolution or Smart TV functionality, are
    not the differentiators brands would like them to be. Only 26 percent
    of TV shoppers chose a specific brand because of product features.
  • In-store promotional displays and sales associates are not the
    influencers that retailers would like them to be. Fewer than a third
    of shoppers considered in-store merchandising (32 percent) or
    salespeople (25 percent) important to their decision.
  • Price and size are the overwhelming factors driving the ultimate
    purchase decision.

Goodwin said that while 4K TVs are expected to be a big seller as we
approach Black Friday, the real story is that this popularity will be
largely driven by deep price cuts.

“When we are expecting 55-inch 4K TVs to be sold for as low as $315 on
Black Friday, are consumers really buying these TVs because they have 4K
resolution? Our data suggests they will be buying them because it’s the
largest screen that fits their budget,” said Goodwin.

Download “Understanding
the Path to Purchase for Television Buyers
” to see the full study

About InfoScout

InfoScout helps brands and retailers grow via next generation consumer
insights derived from America’s largest purchase panel. Through its
portfolio of proprietary mobile apps that engage a representative sample
of American shoppers, InfoScout captures nearly 1 out of every 500
shopping trips made across the country. These shoppers also complete
in-the-moment surveys to more fully explain the ‘why behind the buy.’
With more than 100 million brick-and-mortar and ecommerce receipts
captured annually, InfoScout has rapidly become a primary source of
real-time, omnichannel behavioral insights for industry leaders such as
Intel, Electronic Arts, and NBC Universal.


for InfoScout
Jamie Bryant, 972-850-5858