The Consumer Buying Decision Process

or How real people really buy things When people are buying something that’s important, expensive, or risky, they don’t generally do it on a whim. They go through a few stages weighing up options and looking at alternatives. Every step on this journey is one where they could lose interest. By plugging gaps between stages, you will generate and retain more profitable customers. How considered is their buying decision? People don’t typically go from blissful ignorance to paying customer in one great leap. They go through a series of thought processes along the way. The more important or risky that decision, the more this seems to apply. At one end of the spectrum there are buying decisions made in a heartbeat. These are either impulse buys driven entirely by emotion or by logic, but rarely both. Those ‘I just had to have it’ moments, like a bunch of flowers or a chocolate bar. Or, something totally functional, like a pack of envelopes for the stationery cupboard. These kinds o


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