CONSUMER BUYING BEHAVIOR
Factors which affect a consumer's buying behavior includes
Social factors are those factors which are induced by other people with whom the consumer is in contact with by one way or the other and have affect on the consumers buying behavior. These social factors can arise from culture, subculture, family and roles, reference groups and social class.
Psychological factors are an important part of the decision process. These are inherent to an individual and usually generate forces which affect his buying behavior. These forces include perception, motives, attitudes, learning and personality.
Personal factors are those factors which are unique to an individual. These have been acquired over a period of time by the consumer and influence a person’s buying behavior.
A buying process of a consumer is quite a complex matter wherein several internal and external factors come into play together to form a buying decision. While consumers may not think too much while buying low valued products as those products are bought on an impulse, but for higher valued products, customers would go through several stages which are discussed as below. Sometimes, the process can be quite lengthy and may many different social, psychological and personal factors. Impulsive buying on the other hand are spot on and the companies behind such low valued products that generally trigger an impulse buying may want to implement such strategies that drives the customer to make that impulsive buying decision.
Problem or Need Recognition
This is the very first stage toward a buying decision wherein the customer recognizes the problem or a need to be fulfilled. This could be of two types that is an actual state or a desired state. An actual state is such that the problem is arisen due to say a particular product has become faulty or expired or depleted and thus needs to be replaced. On the other hand, the desired state is such that there is an imbalance seen between an actual state and a desired state. This is when a superior product has come which can accomplish the same amount of things the previous product accomplished but at a faster rate and hence is superior to it. This need could be triggered either by an internal stimulus or an external stimulus; a marketer should effectively identify the trigger points so as to develop successful marketing strategies around the product lifting it above others making it end up in the customers basket.
Information search is finding about which product the customer needs to buy. What prices has he been getting in the option and in what quantity he needs to buy. Given the above instance of buying a computer, a customer would do an information search on the following parameters : a) What kind of computers do I need to buy ? Should I buy a laptop, a netbook, an ultrabook, an assembled one or an All-in-one computer ? b) What should be the specifications of the computer ?
c) Does the given specification would be overkill for my set of usage or would it fail to satisfy my needs ? d) Should I consider anything else such as any other product or services in addition to buying the given computer ? The consumer may gather these information by visiting the retail stores and getting a demonstration of the product. The consumer may also ask his friends, families and co-workers in helping him making a right decision. In recent times, consumers heavily rely on review sites and forums on the internet to make an informed purchase decision.
Evaluation of different purchase options :
After the consumer has searched for information about the products given a variety of sources he tapped into gather the info from, he would now evaluate the different purchasing options. Consumers often paint a system wherein they buy electronic products based on the number of features, serviceability and durability of the...
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