On-line mercantile models from customer perspective
The on-line consumer expects quality,convenience,value,low price and control.To meet these expectations and understand the behaviour of the online shopper,there is a need for a business process model that provides a standard product/services purchasing process from an interactive services and merchandising point of view.
Consumer mercantile activities canbe grouped into three phasesprepurchase preparation,purchase consummation and postpurchase interaction.
- The prepurchase preparation phase includes search and discovery for set of products in the large information space capable of meeting customer requirements and product selection fron the smaller set of products based on attribute comparison.
- The purchse consummation phase specifies the flow of information and documents associated with purchasing and negotiation with merchants for suitable terms,such as price,availability,and delivery dates; and electronic payment mechanisms that integrate payment into the purchasing process.
- The postpurchase interaction phase includes customer service and support to address customer complaints,product returns and product defects.
1. Pre Purchase Preparation:
From the consumer point of view any major purchase can be assumed to involve some amount of pre purchase deliberation. Pre purchase deliberation is defined as elapsed time between the consumer’s first thinking about buying and actual purchase itself. Information search should constitute the major part of duration but comparison of alternatives and price negotiations would be included in continuously evolving information search and deliver process. To deliberate, consumers have to be watchful for the new or existing information which are essential for purchase decision process.
Information on consumer characteristics with reduced purchase deliberation time can be quite valuable when attempting to target, selective communications to desired audience properly. Thus not much attention have been paid to this important research area which may dictate success or failure of online shopping. Consumers can be categorized into three types:
i. Impulsive buyers
Impulsive buyers: these buyers purchase the product quickly.
ii. Patient buyers
Patient buyers: who purchase products after making some analysis or comparison.
iii. Analytical buyers
Who do substantial research before making the decision to purchase product or services.