Is Higher Quality Always Better?

Whenever we buy items, it is compelling to buy the best quality on the market. This makes sense, because higher quality items equal better or longer lasting products. However, our needs do not always require higher quality or a more expensive price. For example, purchasing Beats for $300 may not be a smart choice if you only use headphones once a week or on runs. Instead of buying the highest quality, we should consider buying the best value. The term value is defined as “relative worth, utility, or importance.” The Beats may be worth the value of $300 to someone who wears them every day, but to the people who only wear them once a week, it may not be the best choice.

I have fallen victim to this idea that I need a higher quality blue tooth speaker. Instead of buying a simple speaker that would cost $30, I opted to buy the high quality $180 UE BOOM Speaker. Why the extreme price inflation you may ask? Well, the $180 UE Boom Speaker had these awesome features: playing music in one meter of water for an hour, a 60 foot stretch for blue tooth, higher volume, 360-degree sound, and the ability to “party play” which means the speaker can connect with other UE BOOMS and all play the same music.  With these different features, I have only benefited from the 60 foot stretch for blue tooth and 360-degree sound. Those two features are not worth the extra $150 that I spent on the speakers, but, at the time of purchase, I felt like I needed the higher quality.

After this experience, I created a list of questions to help me make purchasing decisions based not only on the quality of the product, but also the cost.

  1. How often will you use it?

  2. Are there less expensive alternatives available?

  3. What are the reasons for buying the product?

  4. How urgent is the need for this product?

  5. Have you looked at other stores or websites, such as Amazon, to see if you might be able to find the same product for a price that is less expensive?

By asking these questions, one can determine if the quality of the product is necessary for the use it will receive. So, remember to ask these questions the next time you decide to buy something. If you don’t, then you might just end up buying a Bluetooth speaker that has more functions than you could use, and spend $150 that could have been spent elsewhere.