In the production of this report, the information is obtained from several different sources. The sources of information are collected from books, the internet, and journals databases in relation to consumer behaviour and the country of origin. The information is used to support the discussion and analysis. The report assumes the status oriented consumers as the market assumptions. The scope of the report covers the theoretical concept section in the following section. It is about the theory of country of origin and the steps in consumer decision making. Also, there is discussion and analysis section, where the importance of COO and the steps impacted by the COO are discussed. Finally, conclusion and recommendation are presented in the last section of this report.
1. Theoretical Concept
1. Country of Origin (COO)
Country of origin plays an important role in consumer decision making process. Consumers strongly associate certain items with specific countries, and products from those countries often attempt to benefit from these linkages (Solomon 2009, pp.375). Sometimes it is being used as a determining factor for consumers when they buy a product. Consumers buy products not only because they perform well or are produced by a well known corporation, but also based on the country of origin (Maheswaran 2006). Saeed (1994) points out that country-of-origin means the country that a manufacturer's product or brand is associated with; traditionally this country is called the home country. The country of origin of a product, typically communicated by the phrase "made in (country)," has a considerable influence on the quality perceptions of a product (Ueltschy 1998). Swiss watches can be an example. Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry (2009) mentioned that ‘Swiss made’ embodies a concept of quality, which includes technical quality of watches (accuracy, reliability, water-resistance, and shock-resistance) and aesthetic quality (elegance and originality of design). Consumers use the term “made in Swiss” as a way to judge the products’ quality. Consumers perceive that the watches made in Swiss have the best quality compared to the other countries.
2. Consumer Decision Making Process
Consumers who want to buy a product might have a process of making the decision whether to buy or not to buy. The process is called consumer decision making process. The process is shown in Figure 2 below: Figure 1 – The Consumer Decision Process
Source: Neal et al. (2004), pp.19
The consumer decision making process comprises 5 steps, which begin with problem recognition stage. Next, information search, evaluation and selection, store choice and purchase follow the first step. At the end of the process, the post purchase processes is occurred. The five steps are affected by situations. The process shown in figure 2, there is two types of arrow. First, it is the dotted line. It allows the consumers to step back the process. Second, the full line which allow the consumers to jump over to the next step.
1. Problem Recognition
Problem recognition is the first step in the consumer decision making process. A problem exists because there is a need. Needs are what individuals must have or wants to have (Griffin & Pustay 2005, pp.432). The recognition of a problem is the result of discrepancy between a desired state and an actual state, which sufficient to arouse and activate the decision process (Quester et al 2007, pp.70).
2. Information Search
After the problem has been recognized, then the information needs to be collected. The searching of information involves internal and external search. The internal search is generally information stored in the memory. Meanwhile, external search can come from many sources, for instance friends, family, advertisements, and so on.
3. Evaluation and Selection...