Here's a Scary Number:

You'll probably make 40,000 impulse buying decisions in your lifetime.

This website shows you how to recognize the "traps" that lead you to those decisions.

The three impulse buying traps:

  1. Confusing "wants" and "needs."
  2. Falling for Advertising.
  3. Believing in Quick Fixes.

You'll save hundreds of thousands of dollars over your lifetime if you learn how to avoid the these traps.

What to do now: Start by evaluating your own impulse buying habits. Then work through all the tabs at the top of this website.

How Gullible Are You?

First, Watch The Video


Watch the video.

Take The Impulse Buying Test!

You'll probably make over 40,000 impulse buys in your economic lifetime. In your lifetime, how much will impulse buying hurt you?

Question 1

Whatever! Charge it....

Do you use your credit card (not your debit card) for small or repetitive purchases (Snacks, gas, etc.)?

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Take the test.

Check Out Our Resources

Have you ever seen an ad that said, "Don't buy this now! Wait awhile and think about it—and make sure you try to find something cheaper and better at our competitors!"?

Read the "Impulse Buying" story.

Details and Tips

  1. Five reasons we impulse buy.

    Mind control! Yep, it's happening. But it’s your mind that is controlling your impulse buys. Psychology Today has a great article on the five reasons we impulse buy. "The fact of the matter is that your unconscious mind is often driving your behavior as a consumer," the article says.

    Read the full article on Psychology Today.

  2. Finally! A use for your smart phone that will actually save you money.

    Use your phone to rein in your impulse buys! This Consumer Reports article reviews apps that help you find the lowest price for a lot of items. And if you're using these apps, you're slowing down and doing research—you're not impulse buying. This article on, the gold standard for honest consumer reporting.

    Read the full article on Consumer Reports.

  3. Think some of our figures are a little high?

    Then check out this article on Fox Business. Based on a new study by a trade association for the retail world, the article says in-store decisions (a.k.a. impulse buys) are now at seventy-six percent!

    Read the full article on Fox Business.

  4. Want more info on switching to a prepaid cell phone plan?

    Here's a great short video about switching to a prepaid cell phone plan from Consumer Reports.

    Like the iPhone5? Prepaid is probably cheaper! Read this head-to-head price comparison—also from Consumer Reports.

  5. Don't really think you impulse buy that much in a grocery store?

    Check out this story based on research by "Point of Purchase Advertising International." Here's just one scary quote from the story: "Surprisingly, more shoppers are using in-store marketing and branding cues to make an overwhelming portion of their purchase decisions."

    Read the full report.

  6. Learn to negotiate.

    A rookie at negotiating? Hey, even Dr. Phil has advice on this topic. Big tip: "Get over your dislike of negotiating!"

    Learn more on Dr. Phil' website.

Reports Developed by FoolProof


Check out our

Find out how we derived the total costs for all four of the gullibility traps. Read our rationale.

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FoolProof's financial education tools are the only financial education tools in the United States endorsed by both the Consumer Federation of America and the National Association of Consumer Advocates.

None of the programs contain advertising, and all of them advocate for you—not for any business.

Why not check it out?

Head to our main consumer information portal:

Or, take the next test: "Wants Vs. Needs"


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