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INTRODUCTION As a consumer we are all unique and this uniqueness is reflected int h e c o n s u m p t i o n p a t t e r n a n d p r o c e s s p u r c h a s e .

T h e s t u d y o f consumer behavior provides us with reasons why consumers differ f r o m o n e a n o t h e r i n b u y i n g u s i n g p r o d u c t s a n d s e r v i c e s. Wereceive stimuli from the environment and the specifi cs of themarketing strategies of different products and ser v i c e s , a n d responds to these stimuli in terms of either buying or not buying p r o d u c t . I n b e t w e e n t h e s t a g e o f r e c e i v i n g t h e s t i m u l i a n d responding to it, the consumer goes through the process of makinghis decision.

Stages of the Consumer Buying Process: Six Stages to the Consumer Buying Decision Process (For complexdecisions). Actual purchasing is only one stage of the process. Notall decision processes lead to a purchase. All consumer decisionsdo not always include all 6 s tages , determined by the degree of complexity...discussed next.

The 6 stages are: 1. Problem Recognition --difference between the desired stateand the actual condition. Deficit in assortment of products.H u n g e r - Food. Hunger stimulates your need to eat.Can be stimulated by the marketer through produ c t information --did not know you were defic ient? I. E., s ee ac o m m e r c i a l f o r a n e w p a i r o f s h o e s , s t i m u l a t e s y o u r recognition that you need a new pair of shoes. 2. Information search -o Internal search, memory. o External search if you need more information. Friendsa n d relativ es (word o f mouth). Mark eter dominated sources;

comparison shopping; public sources etc.A successful information search leaves a buyer with possiblealternatives, the evoked set .Hungry, want to go out and eat, evoked set is o Chinese food o Indian food o burger king 3. Evaluation o f Alternative s -need to establish criteria for e v a l u a t i o n , f e a t u r e s t h e b u y e r w a n t s o r d o e s n o t w a n t . Rank/weight alternatives or resume search. May decide thatyou want to eat something spicy, Indian gets highest rank etc.If not s atisfied wi th y our choic es then return to the s earch p h a s e . C a n y o u t h i n k o f a n o t h e r r e s t a u r a n t ? L o o k i n t h e yellow pages etc. Information from different sources may betreated differently. Marketers try to influence by "framing"alternatives. 4. Pu rch ase d ecisio n - - C h o o s e b u y i n g a l t e r n a t i v e , i n c l u d e s product, package, store, method of purchase etc. 5. Purchase -May differ from decision, time lapse between 4 &5, product availability 6. Post-Purchase Evaluation - - o u t c o m e : S a t i s f a c t i o n o r Dissatisfaction. Cognitive Dissonance

, h a v e y o u m a d e t h e right decision. This can be reduced by warranties, after salesc o m m u n i c a t i o n e t c . After eating an Indian meal, may think that really you wanteda Chinese meal instead. Types of Consumer Buying Behavior Types of consumer buying behavior are determined by: Level of Involvement in purchase decision. Importance andintensity of interest in a product in a particular situation. Buyers level of involvement determines why he/she is motivated to seek information about a certain products and brands but virtually ignores others.H i g h i n v o l v e m e n t p u r c h a s e s - H o n d a M o t o r b i k e , h i g h p r i c e d goods, products visible to others, and the higher the risk the higher the involvement. Types of risk: Personal risk Social risk Economic risk The four type of consumer buying behavior are: Rou tine Respon se/Prog rammed Behavio r - - B u y i n g l o w involvement frequently purchased low cost items; need veryl i t t l e s e a r c h a n d d e c i s i o n e f f o r t ; p u r c h a s e d a l m o s t automatically . Ex amples inc lude soft drink s , snac k f oods ,milk etc. L imited Decisio n Makin g --Buying product occasionally.When you need to obtain information about unfamiliar brandin a familiar product category, perhaps. Requires a

moderateamount of time for information gathering. Examples includeClothes-know product class but not the brand.