The concept of consumerism is not harmful despite its unpopularity in the society. Everyone is a part of consumerism in one way or the other. Although, placing excessive value to certain things is not a great idea but placing a reasonable amount of value serves the purpose. If we analyze consumerism in broader prospect, it certainly makes a good impact on economy overall. More consumer activities means more people are at work as workers are required to pack things and to deliver items to consumers (Erik Kain). In this regard, if someone can afford new cars, computers and other stuff then buying them will definitely add value to their life. Similarly, giving gifts to loved ones gives a sense of pleasure and this is a healthy process. Therefore, behaviors and trends shouldn’t be discouraging at all towards consumerism as it generates economic activity, places reasonable value to the items, improves quality of the product and protects consumer rights.
In fact, there are many jobs in the economy that highly depend on the buying activities of people. This is a good thing considering the fact that generally we all can afford to buy things. Also, the jobs that are created as a result of buying activities of consumers are much better than those types of jobs that Americans had in the past. And, still many of us don’t like the broader concept of consumerism to an extent that we observe the days like “Buy nothing day” in opposition. Further, these kind of events are advertised online and that too by using new laptop or computers.
Moreover, the purchasing pattern of consumers or paying for services circulates money to the people who are involved in the buying activity of consumer (Costanza et.al). The consumer gets goods and the money that circulates has a trickledown effect in the society. The consumerism serves as job creating agent for retail workers. Whatever we pay against the goods that we purchase or the services that we get eventually goes in the pocket of someone who needs money desperately to meet daily life expenses. The staff in the supermarkets and big grocery stores are the real people and the need of money brings them there. Also, the stuff that we are purchase, all of these are not the luxury items rather they are needs of daily lives.
Those who are against the core concept of consumerism, it’s very easy for them to oppose but they don’t realize about the positive impact that it leaves on the society. Of course, extravagance is not a good habit which means that craze of shopping on Black Friday or events like that create a lot of mess. Also, getting up early and queuing up outside the stores right from the dawn are at times not very rational behaviors. In contrast, moderate shopping on and off does make a lot of sense. Actually, buying the things as necessities that can’t be avoided is not a problem, everyone goes out and shops, but the area of problem is materialistic approach that has become the part and parcel of people’s personality. This particular materialistic spur is the effect of capitalism.
Further, the consumerism in general is a healthy concept but the consumerism that takes place after getting influenced by the luxuries of others which prompts consumer to go for luxuries at the cost of their daily essentials is illogical and it’s just a lust. There was a time when people suffered from starvation and they were looking to earn bread, to counter this, consumerism proved to be an effective weapon (Erik Kain).
Consumerism has seen fruitful results in the form of safeguarding the rights and interest of the consumers at large. If consumers are not being treated fairly, they can register their complaints. In this regard, consumers need to be fully aware of their rights. Another benefit of the consumerism is the innovation in the quality of the product. The trend of healthy consumerism produces an environment of healthy competition among manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers. As a result, they constantly look for the ways to improve the quality of their product and services to sustain in the market. The benefit of improved quality or service ultimately transfers to customer. In the current digital age, consumers tend to be well informed and many of them explore every ingredient of the product to seek excellence (Lucius et.al). The products or companies that do not attain customer’s satisfaction are likely to make their way away from the market. The increasing competition among the products or companies also benefit consumers regarding prices.
Finally, the consumerism at large is beneficial for the society. The economic growth, product innovation, improved quality are the advantages that consumerism provides. The jobs that are created as a result of consumer activities are decent ones. It helps people to earn their bread and butter in respectable way. The money that goes out of someone’s pocket eventually goes in to someone else’s account. More people in jobs would mean there will be less unemployment. Also, in the market importance and respect of consumers grow. The companies and retailers give value to the customers that is why they focus on providing customers with improved quality and added benefits in the product or service. However, extreme patterns in purchasing are not good which are seen at the events of Black Friday and likes. Also, materialistic approach is a negative element and it should be discouraged. Lastly, keeping in view all the benefits, “Consumerism” is a positive thing for the individual, economy and society as a whole.
Costanza, Robert, and Ida Kubiszewski. “Why We Need Visions of a Sustainable and Desirable World.” Creating a Sustainable and Desirable: Insights from 45 global thought leaders. 2014. 3-8.
Lucius, Harold W., and John H. Hanson. “Consumerism and Marketing in the Digital Age.” American Journal of Management 16.3 (2016): 41.