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buy or purchase

what's better

     
7:31 am on Jul 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Hello writing community
What is better name for buy link in the main site menu:
buy or purchase?
Thank you.
7:32 am on July 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I would go for 'buy'. It just sounds more immediate.
8:16 am on July 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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thank you, sem4u.
8:31 am on July 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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On the other hand 'purchase' is longer and gives you more to click on.
9:14 am on July 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Buy ..for subliminal reasons that are too long to go into here
9:37 am on July 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

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shinyblue, Leosghost, thank you!
1:11 pm on Aug 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Buy ..for subliminal reasons that are too long to go into here

Would it be to much to ask for a quick summary?

8:28 pm on Aug 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Buy ..for subliminal reasons that are too long to go into here

Would it be to much to ask for a quick summary?

Yea - I'm fascinated now!

And "Click here to buy" - "Buy Now!" - "Purchase Here" - "Get Yours" - "Buy Here" etc, etc, are all options for a link to buy if you need more click-space.

9:01 pm on Aug 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I would use the term people would be most likely to find in the search engines. I think most people would use buy over purchase.

I usually don't search this way, but many people will put the verb into their search query. In these cases, I think they would be more willing to use "buy yellowish-green widgets" than "purchase yellowish-green widgets".

3:48 am on Aug 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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The simpler the better. I would use buy and agree, it is more likely to be used in a search. Purchase seems more "wordy" so to speak.
8:08 am on Aug 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Thank you guys! Seems that BUY is a king :))
11:43 am on Aug 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Buy ..for subliminal reasons that are too long to go into here. Would it be to much to ask for a quick summary?
Yea - I'm fascinated now!

I assume Leosghost's summary would begin:
- as consumers we have been trained to react to "buy" as a command.

...anyone else?

5:14 pm on Aug 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I wouldn't wish to secondguess anyone's reasons, but I would use "buy" as opposed to "purchase" simply because it is shorter and less formal. If the merchant uses the more formal term "purchase", he or she is elevating himself/herself to a different status from that of the client, and is, in a sense, keeping him/her at arms length. Using a term such as "buy" seems more natural and friendlier, thus establishing a rapport with the client. Few would say,"I'm going to purchase food in the supermarket"; most would say, "I'm going to buy food". Also because it is shorter and snappier, a term such has buy/sell has greater immediate impact than purchase/purvey. For the really lazy, it means less letters to write.
Just a thought, not based on research or scientific data of any type.
With Best Regards
PBG
8:50 pm on Aug 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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It was a good thought IMO. ;-)
11:06 am on Aug 9, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Here is another point.

What you can say about Buy vs.Order?

6:36 pm on Aug 9, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Say both of them to yourself, out loud, and see how it makes you feel. Also pay attention to the sound of your voice when you say it naturally. Think about the different meanings of the words.

You also need to consider the context. Of course the original question was about putting it on the button, and not in a paragraph. Depending on the context, either purchase or order might make more sense, but you can be fairly certain that "Buy Now!" will work better for you than "purchase" or "order".

One big drawback with "order" is that it will not appeal to the part of your brain that wants whatever it wants RIGHT NOW! Order implies something arriving in the future, which of course is true, but at that level, logic does not rule your unconscious.

Order also fails on the ambiguity front. What else does "order" mean? And is it something that leaves you feeling as good as saying "bye now" to the cute little 3 year old as she is getting lead away by mommy?

4:51 am on Aug 10, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I found on one big ticket site that "purchase" seemed to work better - maybe a "snootiness" factor or something like that. But in most cases, I go for "buy".
1:29 pm on Sept 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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on the buy vs order

buy implies spending
while order implies commanding the company you are buying from (and thus commands a certain amount of expected customer service: in other words if I place an order to your company I expect the order to be obeyed to perfection)

a good guide is to use the language of your own customer base- if most email you asking for more information on product they would like to "buy" use buy
if the majority use another expression in their inquiries adapt accordingly. The more you customer gets the feeling they can relate to the individuals behind company they are buying from the more likely they are to buy, order, purchase eerr whatever :)

3:23 pm on Sept 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Just a reminder -- one of the awesome things about having a website is you can do split run testing of various designs, ad copy and even button labels and SEE which performs best.

Nothing's better than seeing how your actual customers react on your actual site to variations on design, content and labelling.

 

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