Whilst a lot has been said about engaging customers and securing their loyalty, one thing that we need to understand is how important it is first to examine how consumers behave. Several factors influence the behaviour of consumers. If you try understanding these factors, you could be on your way to engaging your customers as you address the aspects relevant to their needs. Engaging your customers is one thing – but getting down to the nitty-gritty of how they behave can make a world of difference. So what are the top factors that affect the behaviour of consumers in the first place? Here’s what you need to know.
Factor 1: Psychological
The psychology of human beings is a challenge to measure. But it has a significant role to play when it comes to the buying decision of customers. Some of the essential psychological behaviour factors include motivation, perception, learning, beliefs and attitude.
We all have needs, and our need for security and our basic needs take precedence. If you can address their basic needs plus their need for security, you can motivate them to purchase your products. The perception of your customer about your product/service also matters. It is where you can work on making a good impression through promotions, advertisements, reviews, feedback, and so on.
Factor 2: Social
We are all social beings, hence the saying ‘no man is an island.’ As a customer experience consultant will tell you, a person’s buying behaviour is also influenced by those they interact with. Our families can shape our buying behaviour as early as childhood, and our close ‘reference’ group also influence us, such as friends and associates. A person’s status and role can also affect their buying behaviour – a CEO, for instance, will have a different pattern of buying from an employee.
Factor 3: Cultural
People associate with particular ideologies and values when they belong to a community, and the culture of this community will also have an impact on how and what they buy. Some critical factors associated with the context of culture include the culture of family members (their needs and wants, values, perceptions, and preferences), their subculture – religion, nationality, geography, and caste; and their social class, which is not just due to income, but also occupation, education, family background, and even where someone lives.
Factor 4: Personal
Alongside all the factors above, there is also the personal factor. It will differ from one person to another, including age, income, occupation, and lifestyle. For example, a person with a higher income will have greater purchasing power, and people tend to purchase things that are appropriate to their chosen profession. Their lifestyle can also impact their buying behaviour; a person who has a healthy lifestyle will buy products related to their lifestyle, for example.
Factor 5: Economic
Lastly, there are economic factors that influence buying decisions, whether it’s income, credit, assets, and savings. For example, people with more disposable income will have greater purchasing power, and when consumers can access easy and convenient credit for purchasing items, they tend to spend more.
Once you have a good understanding of consumer behaviour, it paves the way for you to create a more meaningful relationship with them as you strive to address their needs – and this, in turn, leads to loyalty.
Image attributed to Pixabay.com