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Investigating the Pre-Purchase Phase of the Customer Journey – An Exploratory Study in the Home Furnishing Retail Industry

Nici, Ermelinda LU and von Creutlein, Aapi LU (2017) BUSN39 20171
Department of Business Administration
Abstract
The purpose of this research was to generate new insights of what causes consumers to recognise needs, how they search for information, and how they evaluate the alternatives during the pre-purchase phase of the customer journey. The selected topic is of relevance, as consumer behaviour has gone through significant changes in recent years as a result of developments in everyday technology. To fulfil the purpose described above, the present study made use of both deductive and inductive approaches to the research, while looking at the subject from subjectivist epistemological and constructivist ontological viewpoints. The exploratory research design further allowed obtaining relevant insights with the help of qualitative data collection... (More)
The purpose of this research was to generate new insights of what causes consumers to recognise needs, how they search for information, and how they evaluate the alternatives during the pre-purchase phase of the customer journey. The selected topic is of relevance, as consumer behaviour has gone through significant changes in recent years as a result of developments in everyday technology. To fulfil the purpose described above, the present study made use of both deductive and inductive approaches to the research, while looking at the subject from subjectivist epistemological and constructivist ontological viewpoints. The exploratory research design further allowed obtaining relevant insights with the help of qualitative data collection techniques, and the empirical investigation focused on home furnishing retail.

The study accomplished its objectives by generating new knowledge of each of the three parts of the pre-purchase phase of the customer journey: need recognition, information search and evaluation of alternatives. It was found that mainly two things lead consumers to recognise needs; either a radical shift in a consumer’s life situation or a realisation that the current product does not live up to the consumer’s standards. Furthermore, the study gained substance to the understanding of how unsought inspiration shapes consumers’ need recognition, as today’s consumers are exposed to an extensive amount of inspiration and information that causes them to recognise more needs. Moreover, channel selection seemed to have to do with their frame of reference, which was created by their initial criteria for the desired product. It was further found that consumers are very keen to listen and read reviews, and highly value peers’ opinions when evaluating alternatives. Lastly, although technology has helped consumers in searching and evaluating alternatives, the end decision was in many cases still based on seeing the product at a traditional retail store. (Less)
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author
Nici, Ermelinda LU and von Creutlein, Aapi LU
supervisor
organization
course
BUSN39 20171
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
Consumer behaviour, customer journey, pre-purchase behaviour, need recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, home furnishing
language
English
id
8916178
date added to LUP
2017-06-27 17:08:51
date last changed
2017-06-27 17:08:51
@misc{8916178,
  abstract     = {The purpose of this research was to generate new insights of what causes consumers to recognise needs, how they search for information, and how they evaluate the alternatives during the pre-purchase phase of the customer journey. The selected topic is of relevance, as consumer behaviour has gone through significant changes in recent years as a result of developments in everyday technology. To fulfil the purpose described above, the present study made use of both deductive and inductive approaches to the research, while looking at the subject from subjectivist epistemological and constructivist ontological viewpoints. The exploratory research design further allowed obtaining relevant insights with the help of qualitative data collection techniques, and the empirical investigation focused on home furnishing retail.

The study accomplished its objectives by generating new knowledge of each of the three parts of the pre-purchase phase of the customer journey: need recognition, information search and evaluation of alternatives. It was found that mainly two things lead consumers to recognise needs; either a radical shift in a consumer’s life situation or a realisation that the current product does not live up to the consumer’s standards. Furthermore, the study gained substance to the understanding of how unsought inspiration shapes consumers’ need recognition, as today’s consumers are exposed to an extensive amount of inspiration and information that causes them to recognise more needs. Moreover, channel selection seemed to have to do with their frame of reference, which was created by their initial criteria for the desired product. It was further found that consumers are very keen to listen and read reviews, and highly value peers’ opinions when evaluating alternatives. Lastly, although technology has helped consumers in searching and evaluating alternatives, the end decision was in many cases still based on seeing the product at a traditional retail store.},
  author       = {Nici, Ermelinda and von Creutlein, Aapi},
  keyword      = {Consumer behaviour,customer journey,pre-purchase behaviour,need recognition,information search,evaluation of alternatives,home furnishing},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Investigating the Pre-Purchase Phase of the Customer Journey – An Exploratory Study in the Home Furnishing Retail Industry},
  year         = {2017},
}