Consumer behaviour-five consumer decision making processes

Topics: Decision making, Automobile, Decision theory Pages: 11 (2432 words) Published: October 12, 2014


Five steps consumer decision making process analysis –
Take a SUV car purchasing as an example

Class: Consumer Behaviour (MKTG815)
Date: 05/09/2014

Introduction
Consumers these days are smarter and more informative who makes careful decisions based on a balance between their needs and wants. There are generally five consumer decision making processes: problem recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, choice/purchase and post purchase evaluation/behaviour. This paper will discuss each of the processes identified using an example of purchasing a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) with a budget of $55,000. A SUV is a vehicle similar to a station wagon which is a powerful vehicle with towing capability similar to a pickup truck. These types of vehicles are very common among people who require moving heavy and/or multiple products such as builders or plumbers. However, other reasons which make these vehicles becoming more increasingly popular include the perception of a “safer” vehicle because it’s larger and heavier built and the mere fact that these vehicles are “cheap” in comparison to other performance vehicles. (Wickell, 2014)

In brief, the paper will identify and explain the definition of each process steps, followed by detailed walk through of how a consumer such as me will go through each step on identifying and evaluating which SUV will be suitable. Finally, based on the detailed explanation for each step, a conclusion will be formed on the most suitable SUV to be purchased.

Problem recognition
The first step in the Consumer Decision Making Process is “Problem recognition”. As defined in P. G. Quester, Hawkins, and Pettigrew (2011), a problem or an issue must occur before decision making can begin; it is the result of a discrepancy between a desired state and an actual state that is sufficient to arouse and activate the decision process”. Blackwell (2007) also said that “No-one buys a product unless they have a problem, a need or a want” which Max-Neef (1992) defines a need as an 'underlying internal forces that drive our actions'(Omid et al., 2011). In Summary, problem recognition is an important step for customer to start their decision making process and find out what is their need or want. It can be classified as the gap between the desired and actual state for each circumstance. When the desired state exceeds the actual state, the problem will be recognized.

An example of the “problem recognition”will be illustrated using my own personal circumstance. As an international overseas student who now lives alone in Sydney suburb where the rent is more affordable in comparison to living in the city. The major disadvantage of living in the suburban Sydney is the fact that it is a bit far away to public transits (train stations and bus stops) which inevitably makes grocery shopping a nightmare for me (it is not easy to carry lots of heavy groceries and travel home on foot). It is both time consuming as I have to follow the timetable for the train and limited in the amount of groceries which I can purchase at once due to the limitation on my arm strength. In addition, I like to travel and have more freedom going anywhere at any time. Safety is another reason which will persuade me into buying a motor vehicle as sometimes I would be home late and even though Australia is a safe country, it is still inappropriate for a girl walking on the street at mid-night. Based on the problems recognised above, having a car is an appropriate solution to the problems. Although there are various models of motor vehicle to choose from, a SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle) appears to be the most suitable model for me due to its well known tough exterior, spacious interior and high performance house power.

Now that I have recognised the problem and identified a possible solution, I will need to do some “information searching”to further explore my options in purchasing the most appropriate...

References: Blackwell, R. (2007). Consumer behavior- an Asia pacific approach. Level 7,80 Dorcas street, South Melbourne, Victoria, Australia: Thomson
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Omid, R., Nasser, G.-A., Hofstede, G. J., Nematbakhsh, M. A., Ahmad, B., & Verwaart, T. (2011). Agent-based modeling of consumer decision making process based on power distance and personality. Retrieved 02, 09, 2014, from http://www.sciencedirect.com.simsrad.net.ocs.mq.edu.au/science/article/pii/S0950705111000888
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