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Factors affecting consumer buying behavior Why do we need to learn about consumer buying behavior?

The simple answer is that no longer can we take the customers for granted. Consumer buying behavior determines how our consumers decide to buy our product and what are the various factors responsible for this decision? Out of 11000 new products introduced by 77 companies, only 56% are present after 5 years. Only 8% of new product concepts offered by 112 leading companies reached the market. Out of that 83% failed to meet marketing objectives. What we need to understand here is why consumers make the purchases that they make, what factors influence consumer purchases and changing factors in our society The central focus of marketing is the consumer. To devise good marketing plans, it is necessary to examine consumer behavioral attributes and needs, lifestyles, and purchase processes and then make proper marketing-mix decisions. The study of Consumer behavior includes the study of what they buy, why they buy, how they buy, when they buy, from where they buy, and how often they buy. An open-minded consumer-oriented approach is imperative in todays diverse global marketplace so a firm can identify and serve its target market, minimize dissatisfaction, and stay ahead of competitors. Final consumers purchase for personal, family, or household use. Major Factors affecting consumer buying behavior

Cultural factors affecting consumer buying behaviour: Cultural factors have a significant impact on customer behavior.Culture is the most basic cause of a persons wants and behavior. Growing up, children learn basic values, perception and wants from the family and other important groups. Marketers are always trying to spot cultural shifts which might point to new products that might be wanted by customers or to increased demand.

Consumer behavior refers to the selection, purchase and consumption of goods and services for the satisfaction of their wants. There are different processes involved in the consumer behavior. Initially the consumer tries to find what commodities he would like to consume, then he selects only those commodities that promise greater utility. After selecting the commodities, the consumer makes an estimate of the available money which he can spend. Lastly, the consumer analyzes the prevailing prices of commodities and takes the decision about the commodities he should consume. Meanwhile, there are various other factors influencing the purchases of consumer such as social, cultural, personal and psychological. The explanation of these factors is given below. 1. Cultural Factors Consumer behavior is deeply influenced by cultural factors such as: buyer culture, subculture, and social class. Culture Basically, culture is the part of every society and is the important cause of person wants and behavior. The influence of culture on buying behavior varies from country to country therefore marketers have to be very careful in analyzing the culture of different groups, regions or even countries. Subculture Each culture contains different subcultures such as religions, nationalities, geographic regions, racial groups etc. Marketers can use these groups by segmenting the market into various small portions. For example marketers can design products according to the needs of a particular geographic group. Social Class Every society possesses some form of social class which is important to the marketers because the buying behavior of people in a given social class is similar. In this way marketing activities could be tailored according to different social classes. Here we should note that social class is not only determined by income but there are various other factors as well such as: wealth, education, occupation etc.

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4. Psychological Factors

There are four important psychological factors affecting the consumer buying behavior. These are: perception, motivation, learning, beliefs and attitudes. Motivation The level of motivation also affects the buying behavior of customers. Every person has different needs such as physiological needs, biological needs, social needs etc. The nature of the needs is that, some of them are most pressing while others are least pressing. Therefore a need becomes a motive when it is more pressing to direct the person to seek satisfaction. Perception Selecting, organizing and interpreting information in a way to produce a meaningful experience of the world is called perception. There are three different perceptual processes which are selective attention, selective distortion and selective retention. In case of selective attention, marketers try to attract the customer attention. Whereas, in case of selective distortion, customers try to interpret the information in a way that will support what the customers already believe. Similarly, in case of selective retention, marketers try to retain information that supports their beliefs. Beliefs and Attitudes Customer possesses specific belief and attitude towards various products. Since such beliefs and attitudes make up brand image and affect consumer buying behavior therefore marketers are interested in them. Marketers can change the beliefs and attitudes of customers by launching special campaigns in this regard.

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Consumer Behaviour deals with the study of buying behaviour of consumers. Let us understand the effect of psychological factors on consumer behaviour:

Nancy went to a nearby restaurant and ordered pizza for herself. Why did Nancy buy pizza ? Answer - She was feeling hungry and wanted to eat something.

In the above example, Hunger was the motivating factor for Nancy to purchase pizza. There are several other factors which motivat individuals to purchase products and services. An individual who is thirsty would definitely not mind spending on soft drinks, packag water, juice and so on. Recognition and self esteem also influence the buying decision of individuals.

Why do people wear branded clothes ? Individuals prefer to spend on premium brands and unique merchandise for others to look up to them. Certain products become their status symbol and people know them by their choice of picking up products that are exclusive. An individual who wears a Tag Heuer watch would never purchase a local watch as this would be against his image.

What is Perception ? What an individual thinks about a particular product or service is his/her perception towards the same. For someone a Dell Laptop might be the best laptop while for others it could be just one of the best brands available. Individuals with the same needs might not purchase similar products due to difference in perception. Catherine and Roselyn had a hectic day at work and thus wanted to have something while returning from work. Catherine ordered a large chicken pizza with French fries and coke while Roselyn preferred a baked vegetable sandwich. Though both Catherine and Roselyn had the same motivation (hunger), but the products they purchased were entirely different as Roselyn perceived pizza to be a calorie laden food. Individuals think differently and their perceptions do not match. Individuals perceive similar situation differently due to difference in the way they interpret information. There are three different processes which lead to difference in perception:


2. 3.

Selective Attention - Selective attention refers to the process where individuals pay attention to information that is of use to them or their immediate family members. An individual in a single day is exposed to numerous advertisements, billboards, hoardings etc but he is interested in only those which would benefit him in any way. He would not be interested in information which is not relevant at the moment. Selective Distortion - Consumers tend to perceive information in a way which would be in line to their existing thoughts and beliefs. Selective Retention - Consumers remember information which would be useful to them, rest all they forget in due course of time. Michael wanted to purchase a watch for his wife and thus he remembered the RADO advertisement which he had seen several days ago.

Learning comes only through experience. An individual comes to know about a product and service only after he/she uses the same. An individual who is satisfied with a particular product/service will show a strong inclination towards buying the same product again.

Beliefs and Attitude

Beliefs and attitude play an essential role in influencing the buying decision of consumers. Individuals create a certain image of every product or service available in the market. Every brand has an image attached to it, also called its brand image. Consumers purchase products/services based on their opinions which they form towards a particular product or service. A product might be really good but if the consumer feels it is useless, he would never buy it.

3.Cultural Factors that Effect Consumer Behavior 3.1. Culture Culture is the complex of beliefs of human societies, their roles, their behavior, their values, traditions, customs and traditions. Culture is an extremely important concept to understand consumer behavior and that needs to be examined. Culture is the sum of a shared purpose among members of society, customs, norms and traditions 2 . The basic reason of persons desire or determination is culture 3 . 3.1.1. Culture Features Man should know the characterictics of culture to identify how culture affects consumer behavior. Although in the literature many aspects of culture mentioned, in this study the consumption of culture-related features will be discussed. The consumption of culture-related features can be listed as follows 4 . Culture is a collection of learned behavior Culture is the traditional Culture is created Culture can be changed Culture includes differences as similarities Culture is organization and convergence Culture is shared by the members of the community Culture determines needs Cultural differences among consumers in the country, compared with consumers outside the country is usually less. Cultural differences about consumer behaviour between countries are quitely big 5 . 3.1.2. Effect of culture to consumer behavior International marketers believe that consumers would increasingly resemble each other and that they will eat the same food, wear same clothes, l watch the same television programs to an increasing proportion. But the reality is very different 6 . Therefore, to trade in international markets, man must overcome the large cultural and economic boundaries. Not only improve the worldwide competition in the market also different traditional beliefs, preferences, habits, customs are needede to be understood 7 . Culturei nvolves society's thoughts, words, their traditions, language, materials, attitudes and feelings 8 . One of the elements that makes culture is beliefs. Beliefs of the people in a community can show similarities. For example, four, and four times in Japan are seen as unluck, because of that most products are sold in groups of five leads. 9 Another element of culture, tradition, is related with non-verbal behaviour of individuals. In France the men use more cosmetic produchts than the women, which shows the self-concsious tradition of the french men. 10 . As a result, learning of cultural properties in the analysis of consumer behavior has been an important variabl in marketing, especially in market segmentation, target market and product positioning. 1.2 Subculture

The other important concept should be examined in terms of marketing management issubculture. Courses on culture and behavior of individuals with similar values formed smaller groups are called sub-culture 11 . 3.2.1. Effect of sub-culture of the Consumer Behavior Geographical regions and religions are essential in the formation of sub-culture. The preference of individuals who live very close to each other can be differernt. Individuals belonging to different have different subculture values, attitudes and social structures of the members of other sub-culture These differences, subcultural segmentation of the market activity has made an important variable 12 . t is important to know the characteristics of the sub-culture in creating the marketing mix price, brand name identification, promotional activities and product positioning 13 . 3.3. Social Class Social groups, although they dont shown in a formal process of similar lifestyle shows are groups formed by individuals 14 .There are several features of social class. First, the behavior of members of the social class structure, education levels, attitudes, values and communication styles are similar, and these characteristics are different from other social class membersss