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IMPACT OF PRODUCT APPEARANCE AND OTHER INFLUENCING FACTORS IN THE CONSUMERS’ DECISION MAKING: PERCEPTUAL CYCLE MODEL OF URBAN YOUNG ADULTS IN INDIA

Sridhar, Naren (2018) IMPACT OF PRODUCT APPEARANCE AND OTHER INFLUENCING FACTORS IN THE CONSUMERS’ DECISION MAKING: PERCEPTUAL CYCLE MODEL OF URBAN YOUNG ADULTS IN INDIA. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

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Abstract

Product appearance has been considered a significant factor of influence in the consumer behaviour, but its impact alongside other factors like cost, features and intrinsic psychological factors on the decision making has not been in focus. This is especially the case in the Indian urban context where both consumer behaviour and the influencing factors have not been adequately studied.

Based on the mixed methods research philosophy, this study employed both quantitative and qualitative data collection methods, to empirically study the in-store consumer behaviour of the young urban Indian adults (18-25 years). The product category chosen for this study was both a functional and a fashion accessory: wristwatches. Literature related to the various areas of the cultural, sociological and economical conditions of the Indian consumer context were studied alongside theories of consumer behaviour based on cognitive psychology. Primary data was collected from a combination of 74 questionnaire survey responses, 101 observation episodes and 7 expert interviews. This large amount of data was analysed based on the paradigms of grounded theory coding levels as well as the theoretical foundation of the perceptual cycle model.

The findings of the study presented an interesting and new perspective of the Indian consumer filling existing gaps in knowledge. The main finding related to product appearance vis-à-vis other competing factors as ‘stimuli’, was that it has very low influence on the in-store purchase behaviour of the Indian consumer, with limited impact on the final purchase decision, cost factor is the key influencing factor in this decision. However, the other key influencing factors in the ‘exploration’ and ‘schema’ were the socio-psychological factors of peer groups, family influence, conformity and symbolic interaction, each of which were examined independently and together in the perceptual cycle. The finding also augmented the pivotal role of peer and family influences on the decision making.

Finally, a new conceptual framework, based on the perceptual cycle model and reasoned action model, in the form of an integrated decision model, amending the deficiencies in both, to include the key factors of emotions, attitudes, beliefs and behavioural intent was developed based on the findings of the study.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Schools: School of Art, Design and Architecture
Depositing User: Rebecca Hill
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2018 15:26
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2019 15:46
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/34769

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