Author(s): Mark Ellwood
A spirited investigation into the world of bargain hunting and how shoppers and sellers try to one-up each other When Coca-Cola offered the first retail coupon in the 1880s, customers were thrilled. But today, one in four American shoppers will buy something only if it's on sale, and almost half of all merchandise carries a promotional price. The relentless pursuit of deals has totally disrupted the relationship between buyers and sellers. In this playful, well-researched book, journalist Mark Ellwood investigates what happens to markets when everything's negotiable. From the haggling bazaars of Istanbul to Black Friday at a mall in upstate New York to pinnacles of global luxury such as Hermes and Louis Vuitton, sellers and shoppers are engaged in a constant game of cat and mouse. Price consultants use the latest findings in neuroeconomics to fool shoppers into thinking they've gotten a great deal. Consumers, on the other hand, are more empowered than ever by technology, from coupon apps to strategic Twitter analysis. And some brands resist the trend entirely, opting to set their unsold merch out to sea and shred it rather than slash prices. Enlightening as it is entertaining, Bargain Fever offers invaluable insights into how shopping works today.
Mark Ellwood is a journalist whose reporting on retail has appeared in the "Financial Times, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, W, GQ, The New York Times Style" magazine, and "Travel + Leisure," among other publications. He is also a TV producer and presenter. He lives in New York City.