You would have often heard about this – Fast moving consumer goods. These are nothing but products that are destined for use by ultimate customers or households that cannot be done with, as their usage is on a day to day basis. It might make some sense if I cite some examples – toothpaste, soaps, shaving creams, talcs, body lotions; these are meant for personal consumption and the demand for such products is direct and needs less of relationship marketing.
The decision making process is informal and often simple. Sometimes, it is influenced by the budget equations and feasibility. Impulse buying is also common in consumer market. At times, the consumers go adventurous and like to try their hands on new products. Branding is an important feature that retains the customer base for business firms and that’s why market analysts are attaching so much of significance to advertisements and sales promotions, to make their product a household name.
The firms must have a pucca distribution network linking different parts of the territories, where they want to expand their market. Say, for instance, a soft drink can be made popular by branding, but if there is no sufficient supply in the market, how do you expect customers to support your product? Equally important is providing the customers with a product size that best suits their budget.
Market segmentation recognizes the existence of distinct market groups, each with a distinct set of needs. Through segmentation, the firm directs its product and promotional efforts towards those markets that will benefit most from or will get the greatest enjoyment from its merchandise. Over the years, segmentation has become a popular strategic technique as the market is ever flushed with competitors.
A number of sellers are seen in this kind of consumer market and it is only the market that decides the price and not the participants. The marketers have nothing to lose if they sell at the market price, but if they plan to sell at slightly higher price levels than that of the market, it will prove detrimental to their objective. They are only price takers and not price makers. But they have the leverage to freely enter and exit the market.
If the consumers foresee a fall in the general price levels of a product, they wait for some more time to take full advantage of the situation and decide to postpone the purchase. If the market shows an increasing price trend, it is the other way round, either they buy in bulk or go for substitutes.Say, if the price levels of coffee is on the rise, people opt for tea. Demand for consumer goods is price elastic. Consumers don’t care for much technical specifications; they only care for the quality backed up by a strong brand name.