Essays on Consumer Decision-Making - Internal Factors Literature review

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The paper "Consumer Decision-Making - Internal Factors" is a perfect example of a management literature review.   This paper discusses consumer behaviour in great detail, focusing on the effect of the different internal factors on the consumer’ s decision-making process. The paper first focuses on the steps undertaken by the consumers when making purchase decisions. Here, five significant steps have been discussed, and these include need or problem recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, purchase and post-purchase behaviour. The paper then discusses the luxury products and the behaviour of consumers for these products. As will be seen later in the paper, these products are associated with unique marketing strategies and consumer behaviours that may not be seen with other products.

Also discussed are the internal factors that influence the consumer’ s purchasing decision making and how these factors are relevant in the foregoing discussion. The paper also recognizes how the decision-making process contributes to learning for the individual and how this learning influences future decision making. Introduction Consumers will always be faced by the need to make a decision about what they should buy. They will always be faced with this need given the marketing environment and the choices available in the market.

Researchers have therefore sought to investigate the consumer behaviour (Lamb, Hair & McDaniel, 2004) and how these consumers use their available resources on personal and household services and products in an effort to satisfy their specific needs (Schiffman & Kanuk, 2000). This paper seeks to discuss consumer behaviour and the influence of the internal factors on the decision-making process. Consumer decision-making process While researchers have identified three types of consumer decision making, namely, limited decision making, routine decision making and extensive decision making (Howard, 1994; Solomon, 2002; Lamb et al, 2004), most of them agree that the decision making process for the consumers involves five steps.

These steps include need or problem recognition, information search, and evaluation of alternatives, purchase and post-purchase behaviour (Kotler, 2000; Lamb et al, 2004; Sheth & Mittal, 2004). Lamb et al (2004) argue that the consumer will first be faced by an imbalance between the desired state and the actual state. The actual state will be that which the consumer is currently experiencing while the desired state is that situation that the consumer wants to be in.

The consumer, therefore, realises the need to purchase (Lamb et al, 2004). After these needs have been recognised by the consumers, they go into the next stage where they look for information about their needs and seek alternative ways in which they can solve the problem they are faced with (Sheth & Mittal, 2004). The consumers will begin the information search when they perceive a need that could be satisfied by the purchase and subsequent consumption of a given product or service.

Solomon (2002) describes the information search as the process by which consumers survey their environment for any data that they could use to make a reasonable decision. The information search may be characterised by three elements during the decision-making process. These elements include information source, strategies employed in the search and the amount of the information search (Sheth & Mittal, 2004).


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