Made an impulse purchase lately? If so, you were probably at an actual store at the time. According to a just-released survey by, it's probably because of something you're only going to find at a brick and mortar store - instant gratification.

According to the survey, almost a third of all Americans made an impulse purchase in just the last month alone. But where they made it just might surprise you. You would assume most impulse shopping is done online - because you can do it in your pajamas simply with a click. But it's actually in person where we're doing most impulse buying.

  • In-store 79%
  • On computer 13%
  • On smartphone or tablet 6%
  • Other 1%

According to, it boils down to two words - instant gratification. As fast as things like Amazon Prime are, there really is no substitute for being able to pick something off a shelf and bring it home with you right away.

The survey also determined that if an impulse buy is made on online, it's probably a younger shopper. While only 13% of respondents said they've used a computer to shop impulsively, that number jumps to 20% for 18-to-29-year-olds - or Generation Xers.

Just a friendly reminder, as you head out to get a jump on your holiday shopping, it's so important you support your local businesses. I realize you may have to buy a few things online, but check with your Main Street stores first. Your community depends on it.

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