The consumer decision making process involves following five stages –
1. Problem recognition
2. Information search
3. Evaluation of alternatives
4. Purchase decision
5. Post-purchase behavior
Problem recognition –
With my shifting from India, for the purpose of studies and being with my son and daughter-in-law, and also imminent birth of my grandkid, the present rented apartment of two bed room is likely to be too congested for all of us. This factor along with betterment of my son`s financial affordability to own a house, led us to conclude that we needed a bigger independent, single family house in a good neighborhood.
Information search –
a. Search for good neighborhood – criteria – towns having good schools in the vicinity of dental business of son. Search based on the opinion of friends and relatives (personal) and online search (commercial). b. Having finalized a few towns, other search criteria for searching appropriate house were used which included size of the house, condition of house and age of the house, and budget, in the selected towns.
Again the sources of information were real estate websites, such as Zillow, leading to brokers (one of them was selected based on reviews of his/her services) and independent search. Having failed to locate existing house of our choice, we started looking for another option.
c. The next option was constructing a house in a selected locality through a builder contractor. The contractor was again finalized on the basis of online reviews regarding contractor’s quality of construction and fairness in dealings. The contractor suggested a few sites (consideration set).
One of them was selected (decision stage) on the basis of location, vastu shashtra, the science of architecture and construction. d. Next stage was selection of type and design of house based on the availability of funds. For funds banks were approached for pre-approval, according to our need. Having decided the budget for the house, contractor’s proposals for few designs and facilities in the proposed house (consideration set) were examined.
Evaluation and alternatives –
This stage was used three times in the process –
1. When already constructed houses were considered, evaluations of different houses shown by the agent led to rejection of all the proposals. 2. Evaluation of various sites, led to selection of one of the sites based on vastu shashtra (beliefs) and location. 3. Evaluation of various designs proposed by the builder contractor, led to selection of a design depending on our budget, facilities, and requirements/expectations.
Purchase decision –
The final selection (purchase decision) was made on the factors listed above as well as on the opinion of the family, through joint consultations. Bank loan approvals, on the basis of design, estimate submitted by the contractor and credit history of the borrower, were obtained. The contractor started construction with necessary inputs from us from time to time as the construction progressed.
Post-purchase use –
We are delighted at the pace of construction, timely completion and quality. We recommend the contractor to our friends. The various stages of purchase decisions were used in various sub-purchases, such as kitchen appliances, kitchen cabinets and countertops, electric fixtures, tiles and carpets, sprinkler system, etc.