Marketing Basics: The Buyer Decision Process | Emilia Gardner | Skillshare

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Marketing Basics: The Buyer Decision Process

teacher avatar Emilia Gardner, Learning every day!

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Overview of the Buyer Decision Process


    • 2.

      Stage One: Need Recognition


    • 3.

      Stage Two: Information Search


    • 4.

      Stage Three: Evaluation of Alternatives


    • 5.

      Stage Four: Purchase Decision


    • 6.

      Stage Five: Post-purchase Behavior


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About This Class

If you spend anytime in business (online or offline) you will find that most people have very little traditional training in business, sales, or marketing. While many people are able to overcome these shortcomings, you see many other people out there struggling. They want to know "why doesn't my business work?" and "why does no one want to buy my product?"

While I don't claim to be any sort of expert in sales or marketing (I'm not, definitely not), I think that a lot of these folks are just a few steps away from succeeding. They have the will, the drive, the determination. They just don't understand quite yet how and why people decide to spend money on things. 

Anyone who wants to be successful selling products or services should understand that the buying process, that sale that we want so bad, starts long before the actual purchase and continues long after the credit card is swiped. Successful businesses focus on the entire buying process rather than just on getting the sale.

In this Skillshare class, you will be introduced to the five stages of the buyer decision process: need recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, purchase decision, and post-purchase behavior.

This five stage process described here implies that consumers pass through each of these stages in every purchase. This is not always the case. Some consumers will skip stages, or even reverse them. A consumer who has always used the same lipstick will generally bypass the information search and evaluation stages and move straight to the purchase decision. This model is provided instead to show you all the considerations that arise when a consumer faces a new purchase situation.

Meet Your Teacher

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Emilia Gardner

Learning every day!



My name is Emilia.

I'm not an expert. I'm learning every day, just like you. I'm here because I am passionate about: "Learn, Do, Teach." I truly believe that teaching is the best way to master a skill or concept. I create content around the topics that I am implementing for myself.



I am obsessed with building passive income streams. When my children arrived, my dreams of the corner office with the view changed. Now I dream of having complete control over my days so that I can be where I am needed, when I am needed. No more trading time for money. My classes focus heavily upon helping others build the same skills that I have learned (and earned) since making my career pivot. 

One of my goals here at Ski... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Overview of the Buyer Decision Process: All right, let's talk about the buyer decision process. This consists of five stages. First, it's a need recognition. Second information search, third evaluation of alternatives fourth purchase decision. Five. Post purchase behaviour. A marketer and any business owner must understand that the buying process, that sale that we want so bad starts long before the actual purchase and continues long after the credit card swiped. Marketers must focus on the entire buying process rather than just on the purchase decision . The figure that you see on your screen implies that consumers pass through each of these stages in every purchase. This is not always the case. In fact, many consumers will skip stages or even reverse them. For example, a customer who has always used the same brand and shade of lipstick will generally bypass the information, search and evaluation stages and move straight to the purchase decision once the need for the lipstick has been recognized. The model that you see here is to show you all of the considerations that arise when a consumer faces a new purchase situation 2. Stage One: Need Recognition: the first stage is need recognition A purchased often and in most cases starts with need recognition. The buyer, realizing that he or she has a problem or need this need, can be triggered externally or internally. Some examples of internal stimuli or persons, normal feelings and desires. The feeling of hunger, thirst, feeling warm, cold or aroused. External stimuli can come in the form of a consumer watching a commercial on television or seeing advertisements in a magazine or on Facebook or the Internet, or maybe talking with a friend over a glass of wine about mutual interests. At the first stage of the need recognition stage, a marketer should be researching consumers to find out what sorts of needs or problems arise, what brought those problems about and how those problems lead consumers to a particular product to resolve that problem or need 3. Stage Two: Information Search: the second stage is information search the consumer with a need may or may not search for information. If the need is strong in a product is near hand, the consumer is likely to make the purchase. If not, the consumer may store the need in memory or undertake and information search related to the knee. At this stage, the consumer may pay more attention to advertisements, friends who have used similar products and engage in conversation about the need for product. The amount of work consumer does to gather information may depend upon the strength of the need. How much information is already known, how easy it is to find more information, the value placed on even more information and the satisfaction achieved just in this simple search. I mean, not everybody loves to look for information about products. This is fun for some people, but really not fun for other people. Before the rise of Google on the Internet, the likely sources of information for most consumers would have been personal ones such as friends, family, neighbors, co workers and acquaintances, commercial sources such as advertising sales, folks, dealers, packaging and displays in stores, public sources such as mass media and consumer rating organizations and experiential opportunities such as the ability to handle, examine or use a product before purchasing it. Most people, though, now reach for our good old friend Internet toe. Learn more about how to solve their need for product and to gain information. Now, in the past, a consumer would have received the most information about a product from a marketer of some kind. Andi. Perhaps in this era, the same is true, but the former is different. Honestly, it's debatable as to whether most surfers of blog's on the Internet realized that bloggers make a living talking about the products and services that are the focus of the article, even if the blogger has followed the rules and prominently displays an FTC statement about affiliate links or about earning money from purchases on the blood. In many cases, I do believe that consumer searching the Internet may not recognize what seems to be a purely informational article as in fact, marketing materials. And so in this case, in this era, even though we have the Internets now at our fingertips, in most cases most people are receiving information about the products they were looking for from people who are in part of the marketing process. But Internet or not, the sources, which seemed to be the most effective in a purchase decision, are the ones who can legitimize or evaluate the products for a buyer. And this is where you know the Internet and, you know, the the before time where they collide. Because bloggers are able to go beyond that informational, influential stage and legitimise products for people because of the sort of intimacy of a blogging, the intimacy of watching videos of people in their own home, it takes the marketing almost smashing it together so you don't necessarily have marketers and the personal sources completely suffered in most cases. Now, if you're getting your information from the Internet, those are actually combined. 4. Stage Three: Evaluation of Alternatives: the third stage in the buyer decision process is evaluation of alternatives. We can see how a consumer uses information to arrive at a final set of choices. But how does a consumer choose between the final set? This is really not a simple process. It is very individual for each consumer, depending upon the characteristics of that individual and his or her personal journey and life. Up to that point, this is where culture, technology, politics believes experiences and more muddle up. Some people need to think for days about a purchase, using careful calculations and logic comparisons. Others do little to no thinking whatsoever. They rely completely upon impulse and their intuition, and still yet others may turn to friends, family and sales people to make the decision for them. Regardless, in this third stage, the evaluation stage, the consumer considers the brand options, maybe even ranking them, and forms what we call purchase intention 5. Stage Four: Purchase Decision: the fourth stage is the purchase decision. This is the actual handing over of the credit card handing over the money and in response, getting the product or the service. So back in the evaluation stage, the third stage the consumer had formed that purchase intention. That's the product I'm going to buy. I'm going to get that. But two factors can come between that purchase intention and the purchase decision. The first factor is theater tude of others, and let's go through a really low hanging fruit. The example? Let's say America couple are looking to buy a car. They've already passed the need recognition stage and one of the partners, Let's say the husband has gone through and done the information Ah, search and then done the evaluation of the various alternatives and has formed the purchase intention to buy a shiny red Ford Mustang convertible with leather seats. Now, if that man feel struck, that man's wife feels strongly that husband should not purchase that convertible and should instead purchase the secondhand minivan rather than the Mustang. The chances of husband buying the Mustang are greatly reduced. Another example that would be common, and most of us would have experienced his having gone through the search and the evaluation of alternatives and decided, I'm going to buy that one particular camera and then before we're going in making the purchase, you know, telling a friend over coffee or wine or or biscuits or crackers or cookies say, I'm gonna buy that and the friend says, uh, that one. Mm um so these types of attitudes of others will impact whether or not that purchase decision actually goes through that where the purchase actually happens. The second factor that could come between the intention and the decision where the actual purchase are unexpected situational factors. So ah, buyer may form that person purchase intention on factors that are expected, such as income or the expected price on the expected product benefits. But unexpected situational factors, such as a loss of income or a change in price by a competitors may change the purchase intention and prevent a purchase decision. Sometimes these unexpected factors may send the coat consumer backward in the process chain to the evaluation stage further to the information stage, or even past the need recognition stage to where the product is no longer sought because it is no longer needed 6. Stage Five: Post-purchase Behavior: the fifth final stage in the buyer decision process is actually called the post purchase behaviour. Now this isn't something that is involved in the lead up to purchase, but it's still incredibly important in the in the process and so important for marketers and business owners. After a purchased, the buyer will be satisfied or dissatisfied with the purchase and will engage in behavior that all of us should be interested in. What determines whether the buyer is satisfied or dissatisfied with the purchase? The answer lies in the relationship between the virus expectations and the products perceived performance. If the product does not meet the expectations of the buyer, the buyer is disappointed. And if it meets expectations, the buyer is satisfied if it exceeds expectations, all the better for the buyer. Most major purchases result in we call cognitive dissidents, also known as post purchase conflict, also known as buyer's remorse. After the purchase. Right after the purchase, the buyer is satisfied with the product satisfied with the benefits and are glad to avoid the drawbacks of the brands they passed over and also the drawback of not having made the purchase at all of still having the need. But in most cases, a large purchase, a major purchase involves some compromises. Perhaps they paid more than they wanted, or perhaps they didn't get all of the benefits that they wanted. Perhaps they are still looking at those fancy red shoes, and they're still wishing they had, um, consumers continue to think about the benefits of the other brands. In any drawbacks of the chosen brand, businesses do invest tons of time and money and should. In this fifth stage of the decision process, a satisfied customer is likely to buy again, while a dissatisfied customer may not buy again and may also prevent or go out of their way to deter others from making a purchase. On average, a satisfied customer tells three people about a good product experience, while a dissatisfied customer will tell 10 or more people about this experience. Us. There was one study that showed that a certain percentage of people will tell 20 or more people about a negative experience they had with a product service provider or service