The consumer decision process model is a five step process that consumers go through when making purchasing decisions. Product and service marketers use this process in order to evaluate their marketing strategies in order to be as effective as possible. In this paper I will take you through the steps as I encountered them while purchasing my new school only laptop from Costco.
Problem Recognition I am a newly returning to school student, with a young high energy family. We have 2 young boys 4 and 6 years of age, they require a lot of attention and play very loudly. I also work full time, so home time is precious family time. When classes started and I need to study, I was finding it very difficult to get through the lectures on our home PC that sits in our family room. Once the boys would see me on it they would want to either be on the computer as well or that was the moment that they decided they needed my help with something. I realized I needed a quiet place to study. I needed just a couple of hours to myself in order to get my school work done. Step one of the process: Recognize a need. This need was both functional and psychological.
Information Search I went out on a search. Did I need another PC for a different room of the house, or did I just need a tablet of sorts to read the lectures watch the videos’? It had been years since I had been in the market for a new laptop or tablet and I wasn’t sure what was available. After some internal searching, I remembered that about 10 years ago I purchased a laptop from Dell.com. I also knew that I had seen an advertisement for sales on laptops and tablets at Best Buy and Amazon. I had actually seen some televisions and laptops in the front of Costco, along with their Black Friday ads with tablets and laptops on sale.
During the information search portion of the consumer purchasing processes there are five types of risk associated with decisions, performance risk, financial risk, social risk, physiological risk and psychological risks. (Grewel & Leavy, 2014). For this search and for this purchase the only real risk for me here was the financial risk. Was I going to purchase a laptop or tablet that did not meet my needs and therefore spending money and still not meeting my need, the other risks were not a consideration in my purchase. According to Ying, H., Lotz, S., & Bon, G. (2014). When consumers acquired the relevant knowledge, they knew where, when, what, how, and at what price to acquire the product or service. Step two complete: Information search.
Evaluation of Alternatives After gathering information, I had to evaluate the options. As I saw it I had three options, an additional personal computer, a laptop, or a tablet. I was really looking for mobility so the personal computer was out. Then I needed to evaluate the merit of a tablet vs a laptop. A tablet just didn’t seem to have the performance and the comfort that a full size laptop keyboard would offer while typing out an essay or completing an excel spreadsheet. Laptop wins, however, there are many different options for laptops. To narrow down my choices and make this decision manageable, I used the consumer decision rule. I determined my set of criteria for the new laptop, and first and foremost it need to be affordable and fit in my meager budget. A compensatory rule is one that assumes that the consumer will trade off one characteristic against another. In my instance I knew that within my budget I was not going to get the fastest, biggest most current laptop out there. I need a functioning, internet searching, video watching, word processing machine that would allow me to do so from my closet, if need be. During the evaluation process I also needed to decide where I was going to purchase my laptop. Retailers are the closest to the consumer in distribution channels; satisfying consumers’ information seeking will create opportunities for retailers to fulfill consumers’ needs for…