How Consumers Buy

So now that we have discussed the factors influencing a consumer’s decision to purchase, let’s examine the process itself. This process is presented in a sequence of 5 steps as shown below.

However, whether a consumer will actually carryout each step depends on the type of purchase decision that is faced. For instance, for minor re-purchases the consumer may be quite loyal to the same brand, thus the decision is a routine one (i.e., buy the same product) and little effort is involved in making a purchase decision. In cases of routine, brand loyal purchases consumers may skip several steps in the purchasing process since they know exactly what they want allowing the consumer to move quickly through the steps. But for more complex decisions, such as Major New Purchases, the purchasing process can extend for days, weeks, months or longer. So in presenting these steps marketers should realize that, depending on the circumstances surrounding the purchase, the importance of each step may vary.

External Influences: Purchase Situation
Types of Consumer Purchase Decisions