Sunday, October 16, 2011

Explain various stages through which a consumer passes while making Buying decision.

The buying process, the steps consumers go through when buying a product or service, begins when customers recognize an unsatisfied need.

They seek information about how to satisfy the need, such as what products might be useful and how they can be bought.

Customers evaluate the alternative retailers and channels available for purchasing the merchandise, such as stores, catalogs, and the Internet, and then choose a store or Internet site to visit or a catalog to review. This encounter with a retailer provides more information and may alert customers to additional needs.
Buying Behavior Stages

After evaluating the retailer’s merchandise offering by weighing both objective and subjective criteria, customers may make a purchase or go to another retailer to collect more information. Eventually, customers make a purchase, use the product, and then decide whether the product satisfies their needs during the post purchase evaluation stage of the customer buying process.

Customers may not go through the stages in the same order shown in the Exhibit.

For example, a person might learn about the Kodak Easy Share 740 digital camera at a Web site like, decide to buy the camera, and then search for retailer that sells the camera.

In this case, the customer decides what product he or she wants and then selects the specific retailer.

Alternatively, customers might decide they want to buy an iPod on the Internet, go to shopping web site such as, and then buy the iPod from the retailer with lowest price.

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Explain Post purchase Evaluation by a consumer and its reaction?

      The buying process doesn’t end when a customer purchases a product. After making a purchase, the customer uses the product and then evaluates the experience to determine whether it was satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

Satisfaction is a post consumption evaluation of how well a store or product meets or exceeds customer expectations.

This post purchase evaluation then becomes part of the customer’s internal information that affects future store and product decisions.

Post Purchase Behaviour by a Customer

Unsatisfactory experiences can motivate customers to complain to the retailer, patronize other stores, and select different brands in the future.

Consistently high levels of satisfaction build store and brand loyalty, important sources of competitive advantage for retailers.

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Explain the types of Consumer Needs

The needs that motivate customer to go shopping and purchase merchandise can be classified as:-

a. Utilitarian
b. Hedonic or
c. Conflicting.

Selection of dress for Interview is utilitarian need or basic need.

When consumers go shopping for pleasure, they are seeking to satisfy their hedonic needs. Their such needs are for an entertaining, emotional, and recreational experience.

Thus, from the consumer’s perspective, utilitarian needs are associated with work, whereas hedonic needs are associated with fun.

Buying can be for Fun or Need
Successful retailers attempt to satisfy both the utilitarian and hedonic needs of their customers. Consumers motivated by utilitarian needs typically shop in a more deliberate and efficient manner; thus retailers need to make the shopping experience easy and effortless for utilitarian shoppers by providing.

Some hedonic needs that retailers can satisfy include stimulation, social experience, learning new trends, status and power, self-reward, and adventure.

Conflicting Needs :

Most customers have multiple needs. Moreover, these needs often conflict.

Typically customers make trade offs between their conflicting needs.

Because needs often cannot be satisfied in one store or by one product, consumers may appear to be inconsistent in their shopping behavior.

A grocery shopper might buy an inexpensive store brand of paper towels and a premium national brand of orange juice. The pattern of buying both premium and low-priced merchandise or patronizing both expensive, status-oriented retailers and price oriented retailers is called cross-shopping.

Although all cross-shoppers seek value, their perception of value varies across product classes.

While retailers might think the buying patterns of cross-shoppers do not make sense, they make sense to their customers.

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

What information does a retailer need to collect to develop a strategy to attract customers?

Ans. : Thus, to develop a program for attracting customers, the retailer must do market research to collect the following information.

1. Alternative retailers that customers consider.

2. Characteristics or benefits that customers consider when evaluating and choosing a retailer.

3. Customers’ ratings of each retailer’s performance on the characteristics.

4. The importance weights that customers attach to the characteristics.

Armed with this information, the retailer can use several approaches to influence customers to patronize their store or Internet site.

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Friday, October 14, 2011

What are the benefits a store channel offers over other retail Channels?

Store offers a number of benefits to customers that they cannot get when shopping through catalogs or on the Internet.

1. Browsing: Shoppers often have only a general sense of what they want (e.g., a sweater, something for dinner, a gift) but don’t know the specific item they want. They go to a store to see what is available before they decide what to buy.
Store has Seven Advantages
2. Touching and Feeling Products: Perhaps the greatest benefit offered by stores is the opportunity for customers to use all five of their senses touching, smelling, tasting, seeing, and hearing when examining products.

3. Personal Service: Although shoppers might be critical of the personal service they get in stores, sales associates still have the capability of providing meaningful, personalized information. They can tell you if a suit looks good on you.

Customers for durable goods such as appliances reports that salespeople are the most useful information source, more useful than consumer Reports, advertising, or friends.

4. Cash Payment: Stores are the only channels that accept cash payments. Many customers prefer to pay with cash because it is easy, resolves the transaction immediately, and does not result in potential interest payments.

5. Entertainment and social Experience: In store shopping can be a stimulating experience for some people, providing a break in their daily routine and enabling them to interact with friends.

All non store retail formats are limited in the degree to which they can satisfy these entertainment and social needs.

6. Immediate Gratification: Stores have the advantage of allowing customers to get the merchandise immediately after they buy it. If your child has a fever, you are not going to wait a day or two for the delivery of a prescription from

7. Risk Reduction: When customers purchase merchandise in stores, the physical presence of the store assures them that any problems with the merchandise will be corrected. The store will be there to receive defective or unsuitable merchandise and issue you a credit for it. Consumers do not have this same level of confidence when buying merchandise from catalogs or through the Internet.

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What do you mean by Retail Channel? Name different types of retail Channels.

Ans. : Retail is the sale of goods to end users, not for resale, but for use and consumption by the purchaser. The route through which the goods reach to the end users are called retail channels.

Star Bazar - A Discount Store
The retail transaction is at the end of the supply chain. Manufacturers sell large quantities of products to retailers, and retailers sell small quantities of those products to consumers.

There are three different channels stores, catalogs, and the Internet through which retailers can communicate with and sell merchandise and services to their customers.

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