A decision is the selection of an action from two or more alternatives. In other words, in order to make a decision, there must be a choice of alternatives available. If a person has a choice between making a purchase and not making a purchase, or a choice
between brands, we can say that this person is in a position to make a decision. A “no-choice” decision is commonly referred to as “Hobson’s choice.” Buyers’ decision making is an attempt to solve consumer problems. Consumers are faced with purchase decisions every day. But not all decisions are treated in the same way. Some decisions are more complex than others and hence require more effort by the consumer. Other decisions are fairly routine and require little effort. In general, consumers face four types of purchase decisions:
Product Mix of Milk Products
The product mix is the complete set of all products and items a particular seller offers for a sale. According to American Marketing Association, “Product Mix is composed of products offered for sale by a firm or a business unit.”
DESCRIPTIVE STATISTICS ON THE AWARENESS OF RESPONDENTS TOWARDS PRODUCT MIX
From the above table mean and standard deviation recorded for each characteristics factor of dairy product mix. The analysis from the above table reveals that the total mean score for freshness of the milk was 3.399 and the total standard deviation was found to be 1.092. From the total mean score it was identified that the respondents “Agree” with the awareness of respondents towards the characteristics of dairy product mix. It is found that the mean score and standard deviation of “Nutritive value” was 2.819 and 1.157, mean score and standard deviation of “Level of Fat Content” was 3.686 and 0.990, the mean score and standard deviation for “Thickness” was 3.559 and 1.066, the mean score and standard deviation for “Quality of packaging” was 3.602 and 0.942, the mean score and standard deviation for “Label Information” was 3.534 and 1.004, the mean score and standard deviation for “Other characteristics” was 3.511 and 1.069. It was concluded that the highest mean score on the awareness of respondents towards the characteristics of product mix was found for “level of fat content” and the lowest mean score was found with “nutritive value”. These might be because of the high consumption of milk in preparing various types of sweets, milk shakes or ice creams that are common in daily activities, parties and functions. The overall mean value recorded for Milk was 3.444.
DESCRIPTIVE STATISTICS ON THE AWARENESS OF RESPONDENTS TOWARDS MILK INFORMATION
The above table presents that the total mean score for presence of bacteria in milk is 4.193 and the total standard deviation was found to be 0.752. From the total mean score it is identified that the respondents “Strongly agree” with the presence of bacteria in milk. It is found that the mean score and standard deviation of “Pasteurization process kills bacteria in milk” is 3.906 and 0.900, mean score and standard deviation of “Homogenization process prevents sedimentation of fat in milk” is 3.868 and 0.822, the mean score and standard deviation for “Toned milk contains 3% fat, 8.5% SNF” is 3.849 and 0.903, the mean score and standard deviation for “Standardized milk contains 4.5% fat, 8.5% SNF” is 3.631 and 0.975, the mean score and standard deviation for “Full cream milk 6% fat 9% SNF” is 3.877 and 0.824, the mean score and standard deviation for “SNF stands for solids not fat” is 3.926 and 0.816, the mean score and standard deviation for “Pathogenic type of milk processing” is 3.764 and 0.929, the mean score and standard deviation for “Suitability of milk types for different preparations” is 4.173 and 0.818, the mean score and standard deviation for “Health wise selection of milk” is 3.630 and 1.013. It is concluded that the highest mean score on the awareness of respondents towards milk information was found for “Presence of bacteria in milk” and the lowest mean score was found with “Health wise selection of milk”.
In this study the researcher has attempted to analyze the customers’ purchase decisions of leading dairy brands with reference towards product knowledge and satisfaction continuum in the study area and an in depth analysis was carried out to identify the factors influencing the purchase decision of leading brands and to assess the level of satisfaction as well as level awareness among dairy products. It is suggested that the dairies should analyze their marketing mix elements and improve the marketing efforts so as to maintain loyal customer base and towards achievement of their goals. Dairy marketing companies need to develop capabilities of making the marketing function a more market/consumer oriented, which will help them to bridge the gap between strategic change and market complexity/instability. Consumers buy milk out of their functional, inspirational values, nutritional benefits and the psychological impact delivered by the product. It is a well-known fact that almost all consumer buying decisions are influenced by the preferences they have about the product. However the milk product image is formed out of the knowledge the consumers have about the perceived benefits the product offers or the value it delivers or other aspects of the products such as price, quality, availability, accessibility, etc. Consumer purchasing decision also encompasses a vast area including consumer motivation, preferences, purchasing patterns, buying process, shopping behaviors etc.
Dr. Senthil Kumar, is an Associate Professor of Finance and Business Management in Skyline University Nigeria. He has a PhD. in Business Management from Bharathiar University, India.
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