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Millions of Aussies make this social media mistake

Social media apps on phone.
Millions of Aussies are making impulse purchases after seeing something on social media.(Source: Getty)

Two in five Aussies impulse buy after seeing a product on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok or YouTube, new research has found. But more than a quarter of shoppers said they later regretted it.

A whopping 70 per cent of Gen Zs and 59 per cent of Millennials said they were guilty of impulse spending, according to the national Finder survey of 1,054 people. Older Aussies were more careful with their spending, with just 12 per cent of Baby Boomers confessing to the bad habit and 23 per cent of Gen X.


Finder money expert Sarah Megginson said social media was having a big impact on Aussies’ spending habits.

“Whether you’re scrolling through Instagram or Tiktok, ads are becoming more targeted and strategic, making it that much easier to splash out on things you don’t really need,” Megginson said.

“The so-called ‘highlight reel’ often entices people to keep up with those around them, which can contribute to unplanned spending.”

More than half of Aussies surveyed (56 per cent) said they made the spontaneous purchase because it seemed like something they would use, while around a quarter (24 per cent) said they bought stuff to stay on trend or keep up with their friends.

Another one in five (21 per cent) bought a product because they liked the way it looked, while 20 per cent said they liked the influencer who promoted the product.

But for many Aussies, the dopamine hit of a new buy is soon followed by regret. More than a quarter (28 per cent) later felt buyer’s remorse.

To prevent this, Megginson recommended screenshotting what you wanted and then sleeping on the decision for a day or two.

“If you still want it after thinking about it for a couple of days, then you know it’s a genuine purchase and you’re not just adding to cart to get that quick dopamine high you get from an instant purchase.”

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