The type of decision-making a consumer uses for a product does not necessarily remain constant as the needs and wants of consumers are constantly changing and newer innovations are constantly being churned out to fulfill our changing needs. Nowadays what would usually involve a routine response behavior is not as simple because of the enormous variety a consumer has to choose from. There are many things that a consumer can evaluate in terms of purchasing a product; packaging, price, reputation, and whether or not there is a sale on the item can all be factors that a consumer evaluates. It might be even that the product is currently very trendy at the moment that would motivate the buyer to purchase it, which would be a case of limited decision-making. There are also many sociodemographic factors that affect the type of decision-making a consumer uses for a product. For instance, if you receive a big bonus and have more income going into your household, you may choose to use limited or extensive decision making in picking out a product with better brand recognition and of better quality.
Another reasons that affect the type of decision-making a consumer uses for a product does not necessarily remain constant is for different occasions the product is being used for. For example, if someone were to attend a fancy party whose host you are trying to impress, you would use extensive decision making in order to pick out a wine that tells the host that they have class and a fine taste in wine. An example of how the type of decision-making I use has not remained constant is for my use of high-end fashion items, such as shoes from Ferragamo. If I wanted a pair of shoes from the main website I would search all over the web for the same shoes at a discounted rate for me to get the best deal on them. However, if I see shoes that I like and are on sale on the main Ferragamo site, I would buy them right away with no hesitation. Buying a high-end product at a discounted rate would lower my buyer’s remorse.
A new service that is targeted at the college student market are house-cleaning services. The house-cleaning services often come in packages for a full clean up service for a minimum of 2 hours for around $65-$80. This service can be extremely profitable within the college student target market as a general conception of the college demographic is that they are fans of instant gratification. They are the ones who would rather not spend the time buying cleaning products at a store to clean their whole house, when it would only take 65 dollars (split between 2-4 roommates) for their house to be spotless in 2 hours. Although this service is offered, I don’t think they have capitalized on the college student market enough. I often hear these services through word-of-mouth or by an occasional Groupon deal. There are several different forums house-cleaning services can be offered to the college demographic in a more effective way: enhanced web presence, and cross-selling once a client has been established are some of them.
The main factors a house-cleaning service needs to consider when targeting a college target market are price and long-term commitments. A college student often has a limited budget on what they can spend so the cost of labor of a cleaning service has to be reasonable in order to outweigh the prospects of buying their own cleaning products at a much more affordable rate. Students are constantly on the lookout for deals and discounts and are constantly on the Internet, so Groupon, Living Social, Facebook, and Craigslist are great ways to advertise the service. The Internet is also a great source for students to research the ratings of the company offering the service because credibility of the company offering the service is highly important for a house-cleaning service since they are entering your home and have access to all your personal belongings; this is a way you can eliminate your competitors – by being the most credible and collecting the most amount of favorable reviews online.
Long-term commitment is important because this is a service that needs to be used frequently in order to churn out the most amount of profit. A student must find value in having their house cleaned frequently by being pleased with the outcome of the service the first time. In order to yield customer returns and customer satisfaction, the house-cleaning service company can offer deals such as “For every 1 time you use us, you get 35% off your next house-cleaning,” or “Buy a package deal of 4 house-cleaning services for the price of 3.” They can even offer additional services such as laundry services that include cleaning, folding, and ironing.
Timing is another factor a house-cleaning service can capitalize on since college students are those who want instant gratification. You can offer a service that is available 24 hours and have the job done in an hour and a half. Lastly, a house-cleaning service could take advantage of the social issues trending. Currently, while flu season is in full throttle, many students are getting sick. A house-cleaning service could advertise their flyers at a student health center or somewhere that students get flu shots with advertisements that stress on the need for a clean and germ-free house so that students can avoid getting sick.
A company can create an atmosphere on its website by reflecting the same amount of value and prestige they have in there store directly onto their website. There are several factors a company needs to evaluate such as the usability of the website (whether or not it is easy to navigate, whether or not the functions work, and whether or not all the products are available), the websites atmosphere (sounds, presentation, layout ect.) The atmosphere of the website should communicate to the customer that it is a viable and reliable means of purchasing their products by making it look professional. The website atmosphere can encompass music and designs that compliment the prestige of the actual store.
For example, the online store for Louis Vuitton evokes a very prestigious feel where many of the functions of the website are there for aesthetic purposes. The photographs used on the website are taken by professional photographers and the typeface is very elegant and classy. Although there is a lot of information on the website, it is very organized and flows very well in a direction that pushes a consumer to dig deeper into their site, finding more products to look at. The website is also organized in categories of their products which makes it easier to navigate around, such as shoes, dresses, and my favorite category, sale. Furthermore, there is a function on the website that allows a customer to zoom in on the product, allowing able to hone in on every inch of the product, assuring the products quality.
A customer can browse the product from every angle and determine whether or not each specification of the product is suitable for them. Lastly, when a customer has decided to purchase a product, the website suggests more products for the consumer to buy that have a similar style to the one they have purchased and guarantees returns and a full refund if they are unhappy with their purchase. The process is also simple and fast, which eliminates the possibility of a consumer backing out of their purchase. It is obvious to the consumer that Louis Vuitton is a top-tier brand through its intricately and carefully designed website. The price is all extremely high, but it emphasizes its strong global presence in the most luxurious retail markets and gives you an impression that the brand is worth the money.
If I were to start a pet grooming service in a town where there are two established pet groomers, I would price lower in order to gain recognition and penetrate the market. I would set my penetration price to a low price and sell my services in bundles in order to expose the services I offer as well as show that the quality of my services can match up to the existing competition. Once I have captured an interested audience, I can begin to maximize on customer loyalty strategies to keep them coming. I would constantly monitor my competition in order to learn about new services they offer as well as their prices in order to stay competitive.
Since I am offering lower costs, it would be essential for me to estimate and calculate my demand and cost in order to not lose money in this endeavor. I would attempt to lower my overhead costs in running my grooming service at locations I do not have to rent, such as my house in order to yield a profit quicker. I would position my company to be a smaller, less established company who can do the job just as well as the other grooming services. I would start off by using my friends and family to bring in their pets for me to display my services on my front lawn in order to attract attention to potential customers so that their perceived quality of my services are that it is legitimate and that I take good care of their pets.
Other reasons for why I would price my product low is because a pet grooming service is not a necessity, which means that in a down economy, a pet grooming service wouldn’t be anybody’s priority. Therefore a low price point can convince them that the value in having a well groomed pet is worth the money. Lastly, I would differentiate my services from my competitors in order to lower the associated price elasticity. I believe this value trade-off will drive the market to the lower-priced alternative.
Courtney from Study Moose
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