Factors Influencing Consumer Behavior (From Emotions to Actions)

When pondering consumer behavior, what typically comes to mind? Many attribute it to the influence of advertisements and commercials. However, here’s a thought-provoking notion: it’s consumers’ desires and needs that truly steer effective marketing strategies, rather than the other way around.

Have you ever wondered why your shopping preferences differ so significantly from those of your siblings, despite growing up in the same environment and attending the same schools? For instance, why do you gravitate towards stores like Hot Topic while your sibling prefers establishments like Hollister?

What is Consumer Behavior?

It started out as a subset of marketing in the late 1940s and early 1950s, but it has since developed into a distinct subject that combines sociology, psychology, marketing, economics, and other disciplines.

The way that customers pick goods, services, and brands while making purchases is determined by the study of consumer behavior in marketing.

It is more crucial than ever for brand leaders and marketing managers to comprehend the factors that influence customers’ purchasing choices.

Brand builders are better positioned to influence purchasing choices the more they know about the mental processes, feelings, motivating factors, and environmental influences.

In the end, you can only get more knowledgeable.

Why Does Consumer Behaviour Matter?

Brand builders and marketers may get insight into the factors that motivate their target market to make purchases by examining and evaluating customer behavior.

To put it simply, finding a way to satisfy a need or desire is insufficient.

The majority of the time, a buyer’s choice to purchase is influenced by the proper mix of psychological criteria that are satisfied rather than the actual product or service being offered.

When brand managers analyze consumer behavior, they may ascertain:

What customers believe or feel about competing items (services, brands, etc.)

The most important elements that influence a purchase choice

The surroundings of customers and how it affects their purchasing

Brands have a greater chance of influencing the behavior patterns of their target market when they have a deeper understanding of those patterns.

How Decisions Are Affected by Psychological Buying Factors


Every market is unique, and to elaborate, every market segment is unique as well.

Convenience and value may be more significant considerations when making a purchase in one market than price and quality in another.

Becoming “The best” is a common obsession for companies and enterprises, even if it’s a subjective term.

In a market where convenience and value are prioritized above price and quality, being the best won’t have as much of an impact on purchasing choices.

Put differently, choices are influenced by psychological purchasing characteristics that are relevant to the target market.

Elements That Affect Consumer Behaviour

Your friend’s automobile is not the same brand as the one you purchased.

Your neighbor’s TV is not the same brand as the one you purchased.

However, why precisely do your neighbor and buddy choose differently from you?

To be more precise, what are the driving forces behind their purchase choice and why do they vary from yours?

In order to have a deeper understanding of each, let’s examine each element in detail.

1. Psychological Aspects

Our psychology affects every choice we make in life, whether it be to purchase something, have kids, or go out to the bar on a Friday night.

So let’s take a closer look at these psychological aspects of decision making.


The level of motivation we possess greatly impacts our decision to take action or not.

Maslow lists five distinct tiers of human requirements in his Hierarchy of requirements.

Basic needs like food and shelter are at the bottom, while self-actualization is at the top.

A person’s efforts will be directed toward paying the rent in order to maintain a roof over their head rather than towards discovering their life’s purpose.

Similarly, if I’m not pleased with my weight, I’ll be far more driven to sign up for a weight reduction boot camp than my slender neighbor.

The degree of tension between our current situation and our desired future state is our level of motivation to take action.


The way we see, comprehend, interpret, or consider anything depends on our experiences, both direct and indirect.

As an example, if I have an acquaintance who I can always count on to perform as promised, then I will see him as trustworthy and dependable.

In branding, perceptions are important.

Reputations turn into brand equity, which is consumers’ willingness to pay more for a brand.

Apple is seen as a cutting-edge and inventive corporation that produces high-quality items, which enables them to charge such a high price for their goods.

Brands have more influence over purchasing decisions the more skillfully they are able to shape the favorable views of their target consumers.

Acquiring knowledge

Our purchasing habits may be altered and our future purchases can be influenced by the lessons we learn from our experiences.

For instance, you would be significantly less inclined to purchase that item—or even that brand—again if you purchased a pair of pants that shrank after a few wears.

For this reason, a brand’s experience is crucial to keeping consumers around for the long haul.

Customers are more likely to identify your brand with great experiences and make repeat purchases when they have a better overall brand experience.

The more negative the experience, the more probable it is that your buyer will remember the brand and decide against making that purchase in the future.

Views and Attitudes

Since attitudes and opinions are often based on deeply ingrained, emotionally charged, and conventional, enduring notions that are frequently unwavering, they are significant determinants in purchasing decisions.

Stated differently, these attitudes and ideas are almost unchangeable, and the brands and goods people purchase either support or contradict these convictions.

Given how powerful and emotionally charged attitudes and views are, companies that are aware of their customers’ beliefs may connect with them via their message.

2. Social Aspects

We are sociable animals, we humans.

As a species, we have adapted to live in collaboration, thus the opinions of our peers and how they see us matter a lot.

Everybody wants to have a feeling of community. That we belong and are a part of something greater, therefore whether it’s good or bad, we attach a lot of significance to our social position.

This is reflected in the things we buy, which include:


The majority of individuals use their family as a basis and point of reference for everything, even lipstick and companion selection.

It’s all steam ahead if the family approves of the new companion.

This also applies to brands, particularly those in the food and beverage industry.

A select few classic or legacy businesses are granted the coveted designation of “Family brand.” Children raised in a home with a “family brand” will probably utilise it for the rest of their life.

Getting the go-ahead from family members is often a role in purchasing selections.

Reference Group

We associate with social groupings, often known as peer or reference groups.

These groupings may come from social, athletic, professional, educational, or even friendship or acquaintance groups.

Individuals in these groups could be swayed by a well-liked group leader and often exhibit comparable patterns of buying behaviour.

For instance, when I was younger, most of my childhood friends and I had the same taste in music and fashion.

My friends had a direct effect on my decision to get my bright red high-tops and the sneaks of choice for us—Converse All Stars.

3. Customs and Culture

The majority of human conduct is the outcome of learning.

We pick up knowledge from our educators, our families, and our friends, and most of these sources—at least in the early years—come from the same cultural background.

Put another way, tradition and culture pass on the values, tastes, and behavioral patterns we choose.

Thus, culture and traditions have an impact on our purchase choices due to a variety of circumstances, such as:


Our fundamental values, needs, beliefs, desires, interests, and behaviors are shaped by our culture.

Put another way, our culture defines who we are and what matters to us in life, including what we choose to buy.


There are more focused subcultures inside every larger culture that individuals identify with.

Subcultures have more specific ideas that often set them apart from others, even if they are shaped by the same general views as the culture they are a part of.

Subculture messaging is likely to be more effective in that subculture than communicating with the broader culture.

Messages to specific market segments are exactly the same as messages to the whole market.

Social Class

What a person purchases is often influenced by their socioeconomic status.

Social class is influenced by a variety of criteria, such as employment, education, power, lifestyle, etc., rather than just one, like wealth.

The social class associations Mercedes Benz automobiles give are sometimes just as important to buyers as the high-quality engineering they supply.

4. Economic Factors

Economic issues have a significant impact on consumer purchase behavior since they dictate the means at their disposal.

Customers are sometimes unable to make certain purchases for financial reasons rather than because they want to. These include

Individual Income

A consumer’s annual salary directly determines how much disposable and discretionary money they have.

Stated differently, an individual’s purchasing power and independence are determined by their income level.

A consumer’s selections are more likely to appeal to their wants when they have more financial flexibility.

Family Earnings

Personal and family income are not always related, although they are often.

The likelihood of a shared cost of living and increased individual spending power increases with the number of working family members.

For both families and individual customers, this translates to increased discretionary cash.

Expectations for Income

Purchase selections may be influenced by expectations of higher income.

Before the money is physically or digitally accessible, the buyer often becomes cognitively aware of any anticipated boost in income.

For instance, a lady may see a lovely pair of shoes that she wouldn’t normally purchase due to their expensive price, but because she anticipates receiving a pay rise soon, she is content to charge the purchase on her credit card and pay for it later.

Plan for Savings

Bank savings or contributions to savings might have a significant impact on a purchase choice.

The quantity of accessible revenue in the purchasing choice will decrease if one chooses to save now rather than spend.

The person’s whole buying profile and purchase habit will be impacted if these savings are part of a longer-term strategy.

5. Individual Variables

Situational, behavioral, and contextual variables are examples of personal aspects that impact the purchasing choice process.

Together, they build the atmosphere and provide a glimpse into the consumer’s life, which influences how choices are made. Among them are:


One major personal aspect affecting a customer’s or consumer’s choice to purchase is their age.

Everybody has purchasing habits that are closely related to their age.

For instance, a teenage boy of thirteen is not as likely as a boy of twenty-three to spend money on shaving supplies.


People’s purchasing choices are typically influenced by their line of work.

An engineering consultant working on-site, for instance, is not likely to invest in professional and formal dress as much as a blue-collar worker working downtown in the financial district.

Way of life

A person’s lifestyle provides insight into their manner of living, including their pursuits, passions, and pastimes, as well as their interactions with the outside world.

By connecting with their target market’s passions, lifestyle brands that support an individual’s ideal lifestyle want to influence their consumers’ purchasing choices.

How to Utilise Consumer Behavior-Influencing Factors

The more particular you are with your target market and market groups, the more probable it is that they will share significant purchasing decision reasons, even if every person is unique and their variables vary.

Sorting your market segments into categories is only the beginning.

You may customize your offering to appeal to the most significant variables once you’ve identified your audience and the key characteristics they share in making purchases.

However, it doesn’t end there. It is also possible to design settings and circumstances that encourage these elements, as the IKEA example will demonstrate.

Examples Of Factors Affecting Customer Behaviour

There are several different market niches for furniture for homes.

Price and convenience are two very distinct aspects that IKEA appeals to, and these qualities have helped the company become a renowned brand.

Their affordable costs and easy-to-assemble flat-pack designs enable you to make inexpensive purchases that you can take home and assemble on the same day.

Not pricey products that need lengthy wait times or costly shipping.

But by fostering the ideal shopping atmosphere, IKEA does more than merely appeal to the crucial elements that influence purchasing decisions.

You have to navigate a maze of sections and furnished rooms in every IKEA shop, each with everything you could possibly need for a new home at an affordable price and with a practical layout.

It’s likely that if you’re shopping for a new couch, you may also need new cushions, a coffee table, and a plant.

This model demonstrates that shaping customer behavior involves more than simply appealing to their preexisting concerns when making a purchase; it also entails creating an experience that will encourage the action in question.

Final Thoughts

Knowing your customers is essential to developing a strong brand.

Once you’ve determined which aspects of their purchase choice are most crucial to them, take this action.

Talk about those elements.
Establish a stimulating atmosphere for them

Please leave a comment below with your ideas or your preferred methods for influencing customer behavior.

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