Principles of Marketing - Buyer Behavior

Updated on April 25, 2016
Source

What is Buyer Behavior?

Buyer Behavior - This is the set of activities a consumer goes through in obtaining products. It also includes the decision process that preceded or determined those activities.

There are essentially two types of buyer behavior, consumer and industry. While both are similar in theory, there are differences that exists in the process each goes through when going through the buying process. This article will focus mainly on consumer buyer behavior.

Problem Solving

When consumers realize they have an unmet need, they choose to begin a purchase process. In this process, the consumer will face one of three levels of problem solving. These include:

  1. Routine problem solving - This is a situation wherein consumers are typically purchasing low priced, frequently purchased items. It is also called routine response behavior. This is because it is usually a product that one buys over and over without giving it much thought. A marketers goal with routine problem solving is to reinforce the purchase habits of existing customers and change the habits of non-existing customers.
  2. Limited problem solving - In a limited problem solving situation, a consumer is familiar with the product class, the major brands in the product class, and knows the attributes and characteristics on which to evaluate the product. However, the customer may then be confronted with a brand with which he or she is unfamiliar. A marketer of the unknown brand must provide information to the consumer that will increase his or her comprehension and confidence in the brand. This could be in the form of comparison charts or information packets.
  3. Extended problem solving - In this scenario, consumers do not know the product class, the major brands, nor the product attributes on which to evaluate the product. The marketer must provide information to the consumer that will indicate what the important product class attributes are, the relative importance of those attributes, and the position your brand has on those attributes.

The Consumer Adoption Process

The consumer adoption process is the stages a consumer goes through in making a purchase. Steps include awareness, interest, evaluation of alternatives, trial, and finally the purchase decision.

Awareness - Also know as the need recognition stage, awareness is the moment that a consumer becomes aware of a need or problem they have, or of a new product available. During this stage, the marketer must demonstrate that the product can satisfy the consumers needs.

Interest - This is also known as the information search stage. After a need is recognized, the consumer collects information about the product. Consumers engage in in three processes that can harm or impede the effectiveness of the marketers program. These are:

  • Selective exposure - This occurs when a consumers will only consider certain sources of information. They may only read online articles, only watch TV, or only ask a friend who may know something about the product. Marketers must adapt to the consumer and use the sources they prefer.
  • Selective perception - This occurs when consumers screen out certain information. They may only be willing to listen to issues they believe to be important in a product or service. The marketer must identify what they consider important and promote it.
  • Selective retention - This occurs when consumers only remember what they want to remember. In this case, a marketer must add something to the promotion to help the consumer remember certain things This may be a jingle in ads, colorful signage, or something similar.

Evaluation of Alternatives - A person will eventually get to the point where he is ready to evaluate options. What he is doing is systematizing, or organizing all of the information he has just collected. What brands are being considered? What does he consider the most important class attributes to evaluate? The consumer will compare the brands across product class attributes.

Three things occur in this stage:

  1. Evoked Set - Out of all the brands in the product class, the person will only consider several or a few. This becomes known as his or her evoked set.
  2. Salient Attributes - These are attributes the person feels are important within the evoked set that has been selected. If he is considering three brands of computer, screen size may be a salient attribute.
  3. Determinate Attributes - These are characteristics of the product that the consumer feels are most important when making a purchase decision. Note that it cannot be a determinate attribute unless it was also considered a salient attribute. Determinate attributes are subsets of salients.

There are also what are called irrelevant attributes. These are features the marketer may promote, but the consumer does not feel are important. An example would be a salesman speaking a lot about the unique color of a car, while the consumer does not care about that.

Trial - Trial occurs when a consumer tries a product in an inexpensive fashion. Not all products have a trial and this is entirely optional to the consumer and marketer.

Purchase Decision - When a consumer finally feels he or she is ready to purchase a product, there are a couple of factors that will need to be addressed before the sale is made.

Brand Attitude - These are factors affecting the brand that determine if the consumer will buy the brand.

Social Factors - This includes others in life who are important to the consumer. These people will have an impact on the decision

Anticipated Situational Factors - These are things the consumer expects to happen. This simply means that the consumer knows his income, knows how the economy currently is, knows the store image, or something similar.

  • All of these will finally lead to a consumers purchase intention. There are however certain post purchase factors that may change the persons mind beforehand or cause them to return the product.

Non-predictable Situational Factors - These are things that occur between the time the purchase intention is developed and the time the purchase decision is to be made. This might mean the person lost there job or the dealer went out of business.

Perceived Risk - A consumer may have some level of anxiety because of uncertainty about how well the product will actually perform.

After all of these factors are taken into consideration, the consumer will arrive at his purchase decision.

Confirmation - This is post purchase behavior. Consumers may start to rethink their decision. They begin to experience what is known as cognitive dissonance. This occurs when the consumers experiences some uncertainty about the correctness of his or her decision. This is always a possibility.

In order for a marketer to deal with cognitive dissonance, he must:

  • Communicate the product decision the consumer made and extend gratitude to them
  • Advertise the product using new buyers as the spokespeople.
  • Use owners manuals or leaflets in the product that describe the merits of the product.




Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Edmon Bartolome profile image

      Edmon Comia Bartolome 

      8 months ago from Metro Manila, Philippines

      The complex subject made simple. Brilliant!

    • profile image

      11 months ago

      Very helpful,

      Thank you.

    • profile image

      22 months ago

      good points

    • profile image

      josh paul 

      2 years ago

      nice document, it helped me in my assignment

    • Dani Martins profile image

      Daniel Martins 

      3 years ago from Brazil

      Nice article! Thanks for sharing!

    • HennieN profile image

      HennieN 

      3 years ago from South Africa

      This is a great and well researched hub. The information is very valuable. Well done.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, toughnickel.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://toughnickel.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)