Buyer Decision Process

Buyer Decision Process

Chad Ramsey

April 6th, 2008

AIU Online

Buyer Decision Process

        The purpose of this paper is to examine the buyers’ decision process when purchasing a product and/or service. For specific purpose of this assignment, I constructed 5 interview questions pertaining to the buyer decision process. The interview questions were based around the purchase of a laptop computer. My brother, Shane Ramsey, is one person that I chose to interview. I answered the questions in the interview, since I had recently purchased a laptop as well, and because Shane helped me in the buying process. This paper will also analyze the demographic characteristics that influenced the behavior of each consumer involved in the interview.

Armstrong and Kotler (2007) break the buyer decision process into 5 stages; “need recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, purchase decision, and postpurchase behavior”. In the interview, the first question was based on “need recognition” (the first stage in the buyer’s decision process). “When did you realize you needed a new computer and why?” When I first realized I needed to get a laptop; I had just enrolled in AIU Online and my desktop PC was old and could not support the 2007 version of the software, Microsoft Office, as required. Also, I wanted to be able to take my school with me. Shane quotes, “I realized I needed a laptop computer a couple months before I purchased one for two different reasons. One, I was at a point in my job that I needed to be more mobile than I had been before and it was getting to be a hassle having to use other office computers and carrying usb hard drives with all my files. Two, I need access to a computer and the internet at all times, even when I’m on vacation or driving down the road” (personal communication, April 6, 2008). Shane recognized a need because of his job and portability. This is similar to me as I recognized a need for the new computer because of the software requirements for AIU and portability.

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The second question is “Did you do any research before making the purchase? If so, how did you conduct the research?” This pertains to the second stage of the buyer decision process; “information search” (Armstrong & Kotler, 2007). I did not do much research before purchasing the computer. I knew any new computer would meet school requirements, and I knew that I wanted a DVD burner. Also, I knew I would look at Hewlett-Packard (HP) because the last two computers I bought were HP. Shane did most of his research on the internet. He also shopped at all the leading ...

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