Consumer Buying Behavior Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 15:24:05
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Abstract: Consumer is king the statement carries profound truth in it. Today the success of any firm depends upon the satisfaction of consumers. For satisfying the consumers the firm should know about the behavior of the consumers. In these circumstances understanding consumer is a very difficult task because of the changing technology, innovation, and changes in life style. Researchers conducted many research in this area, and they given only few suggestion, but there is no final conclusion. As per the ideas given by the researchers, there are two factors influencing the consumers such as intrinsic and extrinsic factors. It is difficult to classify consumers by conventional demographic factors and unless their thought process and buying behavior are fully understood, decisions on product designs and packaging, branding and distribution channels are likely to be misplaced. With the inevitability of change looming large over the horizon, Indian companies must learn from their western counterparts; not only to identify the sources, timing and direction of the changes likely to affect India, but also the new competencies and perspective that will enable them to respond to these changes, comprehensively and effectively.

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This study mainly focus on understanding the external factors like demographic, social, cultural ,price, quality ,product attributes etc for buying toothpaste. The market share of any product is highly determined by the purchasing behavior of the consumers. Following study is conducted by the researcher to find out the behavior of the consumers, to analyze the preference of consumers, & consumer awareness. Descriptive research design was adopted and the data is collected through primary and secondary sources. The method adopted for conducting survey is questionnaire; Simple random sampling technique was adopted for selecting the consumers. Key words: Consumer behavior, Toothpaste buying pattern, Toothpaste awareness, Promotion impact, Attribute impact. 1. Introduction Consumer behavior is stated as the behavior that consumer display in searching for, purchasing, using, evaluating, and disposing of products, services and ideas that they expect will satisfy their needs.

The study of consumer behavior is concerned not only with what consumers buy, but also with why they buy it, when and how they buy it, and how often they buy it. It is concerned with learning the specific meanings that products hold for consumers. Consumer research takes places at every phase of consumption process, before the purchase, during the purchase and after the purchase. According to Philip Kotler defined consumer behavior as all psychological, social and physical behavior of potential customers as they become aware of evaluate, purchase, consume and tell other about products and services. The scope of consumer behavior includes not only the actual buyer and his act of buying but also various roles played by different individuals and the influence they exert on the final purchase decision .

Individual consumer behavior is influenced by economic, social, cultural, psychological, and personal factors. 1.1 Consumer purchase decision A decision is the selection of an action from two or more alternative choices. Consumer decision to purchase the goods from the available alternative choice is known as consumer purchase decision. The various options of the consumer may be classified into five main types of decisions. They are what to buy, how much to buy, where to buy, when to buy, how to buy. The participants in the buying decisions may be classified as the initiator, influencer, decider, buyer and users. The marketing people should initiate the participants in the purchase decision to make the purchases of the product at different marketing strategies. There are number of reasons why the study of consumer behavior developed as separate discipline. Marketers had long noted that consumer did not always act or react, as marketing theory would suggest.

The size of the consumer market in the country was vast and constantly expanding: millions of dollars were being spent on goods and services by millions of people. Consumer preferences were changing and becoming highly diversified. 1.2 Indian Oral Care Industry Many people in India still clean their teeth with traditional products like Neem twigs, salt, ash, tobacco or other herbal ingredients. Average all India per capita consumption of toothpaste is a dismal 82gms.The dentist to population ratio is a critically low 1:35000 in the country. This results in low oral hygiene consciousness and widespread dental diseases. Less than 15% of the Indian toothpaste users brush twice a day. Colgate and Hindustan Lever together account for over 85% of the organized toothpaste market. Red and Black toothpowder still accounts for 35% of the toothpowder market. In toothpowders, Colgate and Dabur are the leading players sharing between them 75% of the market

2. Review of literature 2.1 Consumer behavior Consumer behavior has been always of great interest to marketers. The knowledge of consumer behavior helps the marketer to understand how consumers think, feel and select from alternatives like products, brands and the like and how the consumers are influenced by their environment, the reference groups, family, and salespersons and so on. A consumers buying behavior is influenced by cultural, social, personal and psychological factors. Most of these factors are uncontrollable and beyond the hands of marketers but they have to be considered while trying to understand the complex behavior of the consumers. In this study, the researcher emphasizes the importance of lifestyle and its impact on the buyer behavior.

2.2 Consumer Personality Factors There are two factors mainly influencing the consumers for decision making: Risk aversion and innovativeness. Risk aversion is a measure of how much consumers need to be certain and sure of what they are purchasing (Donthu and Gilliland, 1996).Highly risk adverse consumers need to be very certain about what they are buying. Whereas less risk adverse consumers can tolerate some risk and uncertainty in their purchases. The second variable, innovativeness, is a global measure which captures the degree to which consumers are willing to take chances and experiment with new ways of doing things (Donthu and Gilliand, 1996).The shopping motivation literature is abound with various measures of individual characteristics (e.g., innovative, venturesome, cosmopolitan, variety seeking), therefore, innovativeness and risk aversion were included in this study to capture several of these traits. Measures by Donthu and Gilliland (1996) were used to measure innovativeness and risk aversion.

2.3 Perception: Perception is a mental process, whereby an individual selects data or information from the environment, organizes it and then draws significance or meaning from it. 2.4 Perceived fit Perceived fit is an attitudinal measure of how appropriate a certain channel of distribution is for a specific product .Morrison and Roberts (1998) found that consumers perception of the fit between a service/product and a channel is very influential in determining whether they will consider using that channel for a specific service. In fact, perceived fit was found to be more important than consumers preferences for the distribution method or service.

2.5 Product Class knowledge Product class knowledge is a measure of consumers perceptions of how much they know about a specific class of products (eg.,cars)This type of measure is consistent with what Brucks(1985) called subjective knowledge, that is, consumers self-perceptions of knowledge levels. This is often contrasted with objective knowledge, which is what consumers actually know. Park and Lessing (1981) proposed that subjective knowledge provides a better understanding of consumers decision making processes because consumers level of confidence in their search and decision making behavior, independent of their objective knowledge. 2.6 Product type Past research indicates that consumers purchase and channel decisions might be influenced by the type of product being investigated (Cox and Rich 1964:Lumpkin and Hawes 1985;Morrison and Roberts 1998:Papadopoulos 1980:Prasad 1975:Sheth 1983: Thompson 1971).

In particular ,these authors state that certain products might be more appropriate for one channel or another, which ultimately influences consumers channel preference and choice. 2.7 Quality It is our aim to provide the best product for the consumer and we believe that if the products have quality the consumer will pay the price, says Amal pramanic, regional business director .Oral-B 2.8 Packaging Packaging establishes a direct link with the consumers at the point of purchase as it can very well change the perceptions they have for a particular brand. A product has to draw the attention of the consumers through an outstanding packaging design. Earlier packaging was considered only a container to put a product in, but today, research in to the right packaging is beginning at the product development stage itself.

Packaging innovation has been at the heart of Daburs attempt to rap with the urban consumers. It spends large sums annually on packaging research.-We have been laying emphasis on aesthetics, shelf appeal and convenience for consumer says Deepak Manchandra, manager packaging development 2.9 Promotion The greatest challenge faced by companies today is holding and increasing their market share and value. This is always a strenuous exercise and one of the tools for the same is marketing. There is no specific game rule available for using these marketing tools .The reason is: each promotional tool has its own characteristics. 2.10 Familiarity with a channel Consumers familiarity with a channel is a measure of the general experience they have with purchasing products through specific channels (i.e.. catalog, internet, and bricks-and-mortar retailer).

Through frequent use consumers should become accustomed to using the channel, which reduces their apprehension and anxiety in purchasing products through the channel. 2.11 Brand Awareness According to Rossiter and Prey (1987), brand awareness precedes all other steps in the buying process. A brand attitude cannot be performed, unless a consumer is aware of the brand. In memory theory, brand awareness is positioned as a vital first step in building the bundle of associations which are attached to the brand in memory (Stokes, 1985). 2.12 Family influence A family exerts a complex influence on the behaviors of its members.

Prior family influence research has focused on intergenerational rather than intergenerational influence in consumer generationalisation. As has been compellingly demonstrated, parents influence children (Moore, Wilkie, and Lutz2002; Moschis 1987).Yet, consumption domains clearly exist where sibling efforts may also be exerted 2.13 Shopping motives Shopping motives are defined as consumers wants and needs as they relate to outlets at which to shop. Two groups of motives, functional and nonfunctional, have been proposed by Sheth (1983). Functional motives are associated with time, place, and possession needs and refer to rational aspects of channel choice. Whereas nonfunctional motives relate to social and emotional reasons for patronage. The functional motives included: convenience, price comparison, merchandise assortment. The nonfunctional motives entail: recreation.

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