We have all felt the strong feeling of panic when we are looking for hotels, flights etc and see on the website that there is "only 1 left".
Robert Cialdini in his book 'Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion' identified this technique as Scarcity. Simply stated the perception of something seems to become more attractive when its perceived availability is rather limited.
While this technique, as well as the other 5 principles of persuasion are valid influencing tools, I am pleased to see UK regulators ensuring they are being deployed honestly.
Hotel booking websites could be forced to stop claiming “one room is left at this price” and giving more promotion to hotels that pay the most commission, the UK’s competition regulator has said. The Competition and Markets Authority has been investigating whether sites are misleading consumers since October and identified a number of areas of concern.