Friday, November 11, 2016

Anchor Points

Happened to catch a story on "anchor points" this morning on NPR and thought I would discuss how game and comic stores utilize such concepts in influencing your behavior.

The concept of the that having a high priced item for sale makes the prices of other items in the same place of business seem lower and more reasonable by comparison. Allow me to explain with a common example in restaurants.

The wine list in a restaurant will often have a list of what the customer might perceive as expensive wines and then one really expensive, say a series of vintages ranging from $20 to $60 per bottle and then one bottle priced at $500. The $500 bottle is an anchor point, making the other bottles appear cheaper by comparison and reducing your resistance to purchasing a more expensive vintage.

Stores especially that deal in single Magic and other TCGs as well as comic shops that deal in rare comics use the concept of the anchor point to reduce resistance to the purchase of a higher priced single card or comic book.

Say you have a Jace, the Mind Scuptor from a FTV:  Twenty set in stock at $70 and a Beta Bayou in stock selling for $1400. The $1400 card becomes the anchor point, setting the upper limit of price on the cards on display at $1400 and making the $70 Jace a bargain by comparison.

Similarly, a $2000 copy of a Superman comic from the 1940s, makes the $300 Spider-man comic from the 1960s seem comparatively reasonably priced.

The store may not plan to even sell the anchor item, though I am certain they would if someone offered the full price. Just having it there increases the likelihood of other items, otherwise perceived as expensive, selling.