University of Arkansas System
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Consumer Purchase Decision
There are many reasons that a consumer chooses a certain product. It may be that it is environmentally friendly, a great design or it might be as simple as the price of the product. As a business organization we must be able to conduct our research and decipher what is most important to our target market. The consumer buying decision process is a systematic way of looking at how a consumer makes the decision to purchase a product (any product) in a product category. In our restaurant we will determine what products they want and develop a successful strategy on how to market our products and services.
As a customer in our restaurant we will have many choices available to them at a low cost. There are five steps in the consumer purchase decision that I’ll explain. Step one is need recognition which simply means that we identify what the potential customers need in our market. What kind of foods do they like and what kind of experience do they want when they go to a restaurant? Step two is searching for the product that the customer wants. We will have many avenues, such as print ads and our website, in which to market our product and inform the public of our food and services. The third step is product evaluation where the consumer gathers information on our products and services. We will have the best menu and service in our market to gain a larger market share in our area. The fourth step is product choice and purchase so it is vital that we successfully advertise and market our restaurant. We will have the best menu, greatest service and the most updated restaurant within a hundred mile radius. The fifth step is the post purchase and evaluation step where the consumer will decide whether our food and service is worth a return visit. We will make a great impression on our customers through our delicious menu and excellent dining experience.
A consumer’s buyer behaviour is influenced by four major factors: 1) Cultural, 2) Social, 3) Personal and 4) Psychological. Cultural factors include a consumer’s culture, subculture and social class. These factors are often inherent in our values and decision processes. Our target customers are mostly young families and lower to upper middle class. Social factors include groups (reference groups and member groups), family, roles and status. This explains the outside influences of others on our purchase decisions either directly or indirectly. Personal factors include such variables as age and lifecycle stage, occupation, economic circumstances, lifestyle (activities, interests, opinions and demographics), personality and self concept. These may explain why our preferences often change as our `situation’ changes. Psychological factors affecting our purchase decision include motivation (Maslow’s hierarchy of needs), perception, learning, beliefs and attitudes. Other people often influence a consumer’s purchase decision. Word of mouth can be one of our biggest allies or our greatest threat in the marketing of our restaurant. We will make sure that every customer will enjoy their experience from the moment that they walk through our doors. They will be greeted when they enter and when they exit and our servers will be courteous and knowledgeable. We need to know which people are involved in the buying decision and what role each person plays, so that marketing strategies can also be aimed at these people. Understanding these behaviours as they pertain to our restaurant will help us gain a competitive advantage against all competitors in our area.
Market segment is defined as the process of defining and subdividing a large homogenous market into clearly identifiable segments having similar needs, wants, or demand characteristics. Its objective is to design a marketing mix that precisely matches the expectations of customers in the targeted segment. We have effectively indentified our market segment as having fewer than ten thousand potential customers in our area with an additional five thousand from outside our area such as truck drivers and customers passing through. Our town has consistently been moving to a younger crowd (Generation X) so our fresh new look and our website should appeal to this younger generation. This market also values environmentally friendly products so we will utilize environmentally safe products in our restaurant. The majority of our market are family oriented so our family style menu and restaurant will be very appealing to our customers. We understand that the customer has a process that they use to determine where they want to dine. With our excellent customer service, great new menu and low prices we will gain their loyalty and get them back through our doors. Our customers are always number one and our customer service will be second to none. There are many options to dine in our area but we will set ourselves apart from the competition.