What Does Buy Into Something Mean?

To Buy Into Something Mean

Definition: To purchase part of a business or organization or to believe in something that many others believe in.

When purchasing shares in a business, it is said you are buying into it. In doing so, you are also buying the right to influence the company.

Buying into an idea means you believe enough in the idea to give it your support. Usually, it is a new concept of which you must be convinced, but, after study, you come to support it wholeheartedly and let it influence you.

Origin of to Buy Into Something

buy in to or buy into The first meaning of buy into has to do with buying shares of a company. The year 1602 saw the first stock market form, when the Dutch East India Company released shares on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange.

Because it was too risky to invest in just one ship (pirates, illness, weather), investors could now put their money into a company and still earn a profit if just one or two ships completed their journey, even if several others never made it back to port.

It is possible that this phrasal verb was in use by then, but it is unlikely. The first written recordings are not until the early 1900s.

Originally, the phrase was buy in, probably because you had stocks in the company. There is an early example of this in The Daily Ardmoreite from 1902,

  • Buy in Ard-Hewitt Oil Company, you will own an interest in six of the best leases in the field.

By 1917, in transformed to into, as we can read in The Man Next Door by Emerson Hough,

  • I can’t buy into no company at all, seems like, ‘less’n every twenty minutes or so they up and declare another dividend.

Buying into an idea came from this, though it is unclear when.

Examples of to Buy Into Something

to buy something In the modern day, it is just as common to say you “bought into” an idea as it is to say you “bought into” a company.

  • I can’t believe Helen bought into the idea that chocolate at every meal going to make her skinny— good luck with that!

This is an example of the former use: to buy into an idea.

  • After much consideration, we bought into the wine company, and hope it’s going to succeed.

This is an example of the latter use: to buy into a company.

More Examples

  • Hair removal as self-care might be one of the biggest lies women have bought into. –The Atlantic
  • You have done your research, you know what mutual fund to buy, you also have the money. But how exactly do you buy into a scheme? –Livemint


The phrase to buy into something is to buy shares in a company or to accept an idea as valid and to lend your support financially to the company or to stand behind a belief with your support.