Fifth Annual Major Purchase Consumer Study


Fifth Annual Major Purchase Consumer Study



By studying the journey consumers make when deciding on major purchases of $500 or more, Synchrony Financial measures and reports on behavioral and attitudinal trends. For the fifth year in a row, Synchrony Financial has collected data from shoppers across these 14 different product categories:


Deal orientation continues to increase.
• Deal orientation was higher in 2016.
• The prevalence of online content and information is one key driver of this change.

Shoppers remain cautious about how they spend their money but see value in financing their purchase. 90% of Synchrony Bank cardholders feel financing makes their large purchases affordable. 88% of Synchrony Bank cardholders are comfortable financing through a retailer credit card.


Online shopping and online buying have significantly increased this year. 18% make their major purchase online (up from 13% in 2015). 85% started their research online (up from 80% in 2015).

Shoppers are being more decisive. The number of days spent researching their purchase dropped from 68 to 63 days.


Retailers did a better job in 2016 of making shoppers aware of financing options. 43% of random shoppers were aware that financing was available (36% in 2015). 47% of SYF cardholders say they might not have made a purchase or shopped at a competitor if financing was not available. Synchrony Bank cardholders reported spending $513 more, on average, than non-cardholders.

Synchrony Bank cardholders choose retailers that:
Have the product(s) they want (75%).
Offer promotional financing options (71%).
Stand behind the products they sell (78%).



1. Deal orientation continues to rise.

Recommendation: The consumer value equation includes much more than just price. Value includes price comparisons, consumer reviews, and cost of shipping/delivery/installation, as well as quality. Retailers need to ensure their communications include a total view of value.

2. Online shopping and online buying have significantly increased.

Recommendation: As the digital channel continues to play a more prominent role in the shopping journey, retailers should consider strategies that increase their online presence, through search engine marketing and website optimization. Shoppers are looking for a seamless shopping experience where they can research and purchase through the retail website.


3. Shoppers are being more decisive.

Recommendation: As shoppers become more decisive, they are visiting fewer retailers before making their purchase. Because of this it is even more important that retailers demonstrate value early in the sales process and serve up detailed information through both online and offline channels.


For more insights from Synchrony Financial, click here.


Focus on what really matters.
Synchrony Financial is one of the premier consumer financial services companies in the United States. Our roots in consumer finance trace back to 1932, and today we are the largest provider of private label credit cards in the United States, based on purchase volume and receivables.

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Author: Ronda Slaven—Vice President, Research & Insights Leader

This content is subject to change without notice and offered for informational use only. You are urged to consult with your individual attorney, financial or other advisors with respect to any information presented. Nothing contained herein shall be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion.

© 2017 Synchrony Financial. All rights reserved. No reuse without prior written consent from Synchrony

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