The products that will be focused on this assessment will be meat products including poultry, new and/or used passenger cars, property (housing units) and dairy products.
These four product purchases will be assessed for internal, external and situational influences to determine the type of consumer behaviour that accompanies the consumer’s decision process when purchasing any of these products.
Purchase one is meat and poultry products which are one of the most commonly bought products in the Australia.
Based on 2006 statistics, meat and poultry products were the most commonly purchased products for many Australian consumers and the country was also able to export meat and poultry products to countries such as Europe and the United States for a total of $1.3 billion in exports (Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 2007).
The most commonly purchased meat products include beef, red meat, veal, liver and kidney meat and sheep offal.
The poultry products that are commonly sold to Australian consumers include chicken breasts, eggs, chicken wings which are available in many of the fast-food restaurants in Australia and boneless chicken products.
The average consumption of meat products in Australia averages more than 224 grams a day for each individual consumer while that of poultry products amounts to 200 grams per day (Minchin 2007).
The internal, external and situational factors are those characteristics that influence or impact the purchasing behaviour of a consumer.
The internal factors that affect a consumer’s purchasing behaviour include their personality traits, the psychological makeup of the consumer (what they think and feel when selecting products), the type of behaviour they demonstrate when buying products and how consumer motivation affects their decision strategies (East et al. 2008).
The external factors that affect the purchasing decision of a consumer include influence from reference groups such as family members, friends, acquaintances and work colleagues, the quality and quantity of the product that is being purchased and the needs assessment of the product where the consumer is motivated to make a purchase decision for a product that will meet their needs (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The internal factors that affect the purchasing behaviour of meat and poultry product consumers include internal stimuli on the part of the consumer where they are compelled to buy meat because of a desire to eat meat products.
The main motivation for Australian consumers to purchase meat and poultry products comes out of a desire to satisfy their hunger. Poultry products such as those sold in fast-food restaurants like MacDonald’s and KFC are mostly bought with the main purpose of meeting the immediate hunger needs of consumers.
The external stimulus that affects the purchase of meat and poultry products amongst Australian consumers include recommendations from reference groups who have purchased their meat products from certain supermarkets, meat delis, meat markets or other suppliers of meat products in the country (Lamb et al. 2009).
These recommendations help the buyer of the product to determine whether the type of meat products sold in the recommended place will meet their dietary needs and also whether the meat or poultry is sold in a clean and refrigerated environment.
Recommendations also allow the consumer to ascertain whether there are any alternatives to meat or poultry products such as red meat or veal available in the local market. Situational factors are the temporary conditions that affect how buyers behave during the purchase decision-making exercise (O’Dougherty 2007).
Situational factors influence whether the consumer will actually buy a product or not from a retailer and what factors will affect their purchasing decision.
The most common situational factors that affect the buying decisions of a consumer include physical factors such as the location of a store, general ambience and environment, social factors such as whether the product is good for the society and time factors such as how long it takes to purchase the product when the product is being purchased by the consumer (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The situational influences that affect the purchasing process of meat and poultry consumers include the physical location of the meat delis or stores as well as the general ambience of the store.
Stores that are convenient to the buyer with regards to accessibility and are generally clean are likely to influence their purchasing decision when compared to meat delis that are difficult to locate and access and also have dirty refrigerators and unclean floors (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The second purchase that will be assessed to determine the type of consumer behaviour employed by buyers when making their purchases is property or housing units which is a high involvement purchase for most consumers who decide to buy a house.
Australia is among top countries in the world that are experiencing a thriving real estate market as many citizens and residents desire to become homeowners. Many Australian cities like Perth, Sydney and Melbourne are experiencing a boom in real estate as well as towns in the rural parts of the country.
An increasing number of people, both Australian citizens and people living abroad have become increasingly involved in owning their property because homeownership in Australia is a goal for most of these people.
Currently, over 70 percent of the population in Australia owns residential property while the rest are tenants pointing to the fact that real estate ownership is an important objective for most Australian citizens and residents.
According to the Real Estate Perth Guide (2011), the increase in property acquisition and real estate investment in Australia has been attributed to two factors the first one of which is the growing Australian population seeking to purchase real estate property in many of the urban cities in Australia.
These property buyers have begun to realise the importance of investing in the housing market as it is seen as a long term investment.
The second factor that has led to an increase in property acquisition in the country is that a notable number of people have begun putting their money into real estate property that is related to tourism.
Tourism is one of the major economic drivers in Australia and such investments are deemed to yield considerable returns to people who decide to invest in the sector (Real Estate Perth Guide 2011).
The internal factors that influence the purchase decision of property buyers include consumer motivation to purchase housing units. As mentioned earlier on in the discussion homeownership is an important goal for most Australian citizens where individuals are motivated to buy their own homes.
There is therefore increased consumer motivation to acquire housing units with the single-family residences being the most commonly sought after housing units in the country.
Australian residents and citizens are also motivated to purchase their own housing units because of the investment opportunity these purchases present to them. Investing in the housing sector that is involved in tourism guarantees some significant returns to these individuals (Real Estate Perth Guide 2011).
The external factors that influence the purchasing decision of real estate property buyers in Australia include family and cultural influences where individuals who have families are influenced to purchase single-family residences so that they can be able to meet the housing needs of their families.
The demand for such housing units has continued to increase as more Australians with families seeking to own their own residential houses. Family and cultural backgrounds have, therefore played a major role in home acquisition in the country.
Another external factor that affects the consumer’s behaviour when buying property includes the quality of the product that is being purchased.
Housing units are of a high quality and they present a significant return on investment to consumers, especially those who have decided to invest in the real estate sector related to tourism. The quality of the product, therefore, plays an important role in influencing the purchase behaviour of the consumer (Lantos 2011).
The situational factors that will affect the purchasing decision of housing consumers is the physical factors which according to Tanner and Raymond (2010) affect what type of product the consumer will buy, when they will buy it and how much of it they will buy.
Physical factors include the location of the property, the price or cost of purchasing the property and the type of housing that is on sale.
Such physical factors will influence the purchasing behaviour of consumers who might, for example, want to buy housing units in the rural or urban areas of Australia or might want to buy apartments instead of single housing units (Hoyer and Macinnis 2010).
The third purchase that will be assessed will be new and used cars which are high involvement purchases bought by consumers and buyers. Just like any other country in the world, Australia has a high car purchase rate that has seen many buyers as young as sixteen years old owning their own cars.
The last statistics to be conducted in 1995 on the number of people who owned cars in Australia were able to reveal the number of passenger vehicles registered per 1,000 people which had increased from 250 from the previous year to 465.
This increase was mostly attributed to the convenience and flexibility personally owned cars provided to their owners which made buying a car much easier.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the increase in passenger vehicle buyers was also attributed to the ease of accessing employment, education and health services where people who had their own cars were able to engage in these and other activities (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2006).
Owning a car in Australia is seen to be a necessity rather than a luxury based on the increasing number of people in the country who own cars. People who have their own modes of transportation find it relatively easier to conduct their various business and/or personal functions without any form of hassles.
This increasing need to have their own personal modes of transportation has contributed greatly to the purchase decision that car buyers go through when deciding to buy a car.
Because cars are high involvement purchases, consumers have to evaluate the internal, external and situational factors that will come in to play when deciding to go through with their purchases (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The internal factors that will influence the purchase of either new or used cars will be the type of motivation that a consumer has to buy a new or used car.
As highlighted in the previous paragraph car buyers in Australia buy cars for purposes of convenience and flexibility, meaning that the car offers them with an opportunity to accomplish various activities. The motivation of the car buyer to purchase a car will, therefore, depend on either of these factors.
Another internal factor will relate to the individual tastes of the consumer where the consumer will consider which car model and make suits their own personal tastes.
The external factors that will affect the consumer decision to buy a car will be the type of lifestyle that exists in Australia which allows for every individual of the family to own a car as long as they are 18 years and over.
Holden, which is the main car manufacturer in Australia, has been able to develop various car brands that are meant to suit the various lifestyles and culture of the Australians. Some of the cars produced by Holden Australia include Commodore, Camden, Astra, Holden Monaro Coupe and Chevrolet.
The situational factor that will affect the buyer decision to purchase a car will be physical factors where the location of car auto-marts will influence whether a consumer wants to buy a car.
The ease with which a potential car buyer locates a Holden store in their vicinity will play a major role in influencing their purchase decisions (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The fourth purchase to be assessed in the study will be dairy products which, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (2004) is the most intensive sector in the country.
According to 2001 and 2002 statistics, consumers in the country drank approximately 18 percent of whole milk which was mostly produced in the state of Victoria.
50 percent of the country’s annual milk production was exported to other foreign countries such as the United States, Asia and Europe while the remaining percentage was sold to manufacturers of butter, cheese, cheddar and other dairy products.
2005-2006 statistics showed that the production of whole milk amounted to 10,092 millimetres while the consumption of whole milk and other dairy products such as cheese, skim milk powder, butter and casein amounted to 527 kt (Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 2007).
Victoria is the dominant producer and supplier of milk as it accounts for 61 percent of milk production in the country. The states of New South Wales and Queensland both account for 22 percent of the milk supply in the country while Tasmania accounts for 7 percent of milk production and dairy products.
The high production of milk and milk products in the country has made dairy products to be easily available to many Australian consumers in the local market regardless of their income levels within the country.
Milk and dairy products are, therefore, common purchases for many average consumers in Australia (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2004).
The internal factors that will affect the consumer buying decision will be the motives of the individual dairy consumer that will be borne out of the desire to purchase dairy products which have been identified as a staple food source in the Western diet.
Milk and other dairy products provide consumers with Calcium and other vital nutrients that support bone formation. Consumers might decide to buy dairy products because of this reason as well as the staple source of food that these products provide to consumers.
The personal tastes of the individual might also determine dairy product purchases where consumers who want to buy high-quality cheese and cheddar are influenced because of their desire for quality products.
Consumers who do not have high-quality preferences might decide to purchase the lower value dairy products because they do not attach a particular preference to their purchases (Tanner and Raymond 2010).
The external factors that will influence the buyer’s decision to buy milk will be socio-cultural factors whereas mentioned earlier on dairy products are the staple source of food for many westernised countries.
The household budget will also affect the consumer’s decision to buy dairy products such as cheese and butter as some brands of these products are manufactured for high-end buyers.
The situational factors that will influence the purchase of milk and dairy products will be time factors where the time of day will determine whether a consumer will buy milk.
Most dairy products are usually consumed in the morning for breakfast which means that the buyer’s decision to buy milk will be high if they make their purchase decision in the morning.
Australian Bureau of Statistics (2004). The Australian dairy industry. Web.
Australian Bureau of Statistics (2006). Australian social trends. Web.
Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (2007). Australian food statistics 2006. Canberra, Sydney: Food and Agriculture Division.
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Hoyer, W. D., and Macinnis, D.J., (2010). Consumer behaviour. Mason, Ohio: South Western Cengage Learning.
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Minchin, L., (2007). Limit meat eating to tackle climate change: study. Web.
O’Dougherty, D., (2007). Consumer behaviour. Cape Town, South Africa: Pearson Education South Africa.
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