Consumer

A consumer is a person or organization that uses economic services or commodities.[1]

People are buying fruits
Consumers buying fruit in Nanjing, China

Economics and marketing

A consumer is the one who pays something to consume goods and services produced. As such, consumers play a vital role in the economic system of a nation. Without consumer demand, producers would lack one of the key motivations to produce: to sell to consumers. The consumer also forms part of the chain of distribution.

Recently in marketing instead of marketers generating broad demographic profiles and Fisio-graphic profiles of market segments, marketers have started to engage in personalized marketing, permission marketing, and mass customization.[2]

Largely due to the rise of the Internet, consumers are shifting more and more towards becoming "prosumers", consumers who are also producers (often of information and media on the social web), influence the products created (e.g. by customization, crowdfunding or publishing their preferences), actively participate in the production process, or use interactive products.[3][4][5]

Law and politics

The law primarily uses a notion of the consumer in relation to consumer protection laws, and the definition of consumer is often restricted to living persons (i.e. not corporations or businesses) and excludes commercial users.[6] A typical legal rationale for protecting the consumer is based on the notion of policing market failures and inefficiencies, such as inequalities of bargaining power between a consumer and a business.[7] As all potential voters are also consumers, consumer protection has a clear political significance.

Concern over the interests of consumers has spawned consumer activism, where organized activists do research, education and advocacy to improve the offer of products and services. Consumer education has been incorporated into some school curricula. There are also various non-profit publications, such as Which?, Consumer Reports and Choice Magazine, dedicated to assist in consumer education and decision making.

In India, the Consumer Protection Act 1986 differentiates the consummation of a commodity or service for personal use or to earn a livelihood. Only consumers are protected per this act and any person, entity or organization purchasing a commodity for commercial reasons are exempted from any benefits of this act.[8]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Consumer - Define Consumer at Dictionary.com". Dictionary.com.
  2. ^ Cross, Robert G. (1997). Revenue management: hard-core tactics for market domination. Broadway Books. pp. 66–71. ISBN 978-0-553-06734-7.
  3. ^ Gunelius, Susan (3 July 2010). "The Shift from CONsumers to PROsumers". Forbes. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
  4. ^ Scammell, Margaret. "Citizen Consumers: towards a new marketing of politics?" (PDF). p. 6. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
  5. ^ Prosumer Revisited. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
  6. ^ Krohn, Lauren (1995). Consumer protection and the law: a dictionary. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-0-87436-749-2.
  7. ^ "An Institutional Analysis of Consumer Law". Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-29.
  8. ^ "Consumer vs Customer". Consumerdaddy.com. Retrieved 2010-03-10. The consumer protection act 1986 of India, is a little more generous with the word 'Consumer'. According to this law, consumer is not only a person who uses the product for domestic personal use, but also one who uses the product to earn his daily livelyhood.

External links

Banco Santander

Banco Santander, S.A., doing business as Santander Group (), is a Spanish multinational commercial bank and financial services company founded and based in Santander, Spain. In addition to hubs in Madrid and Barcelona, Santander maintains a presence in all global financial centres as the largest Spanish banking institution in the world. Although known for its European banking operations, it has extended operations across North and South America, and more recently in continental Asia.

Many subsidiaries, such as Abbey National, have been rebranded under the Santander name. The company is a component of the Euro Stoxx 50 stock market index. In May 2016, Santander was ranked as 37th in the Forbes Global 2000 list of the world's biggest public companies. Santander is Spain’s largest bank.As of 2017, Santander is the 5th largest bank in Europe with approximately US$1.4 trillion in total assets-under-management (AUM). Traded on the Euro Stoxx 50 stock market index, the bank has a total market capitalization of $69.9 billion.

Behavior

Behavior (American English) or behaviour (Commonwealth English) is the range of actions and mannerisms made by individuals, organisms, systems, or artificial entities in conjunction with themselves or their environment, which includes the other systems or organisms around as well as the (inanimate) physical environment. It is the response of the system or organism to various stimuli or inputs, whether internal or external, conscious or subconscious, overt or covert, and voluntary or involuntary.Taking a behavior informatics perspective, a behavior consists of behavior actor, operation, interactions, and their properties. A behavior can be represented as a behavior vector.

Best Buy

Best Buy Co., Inc. is an American multinational consumer electronics retailer headquartered in Richfield, Minnesota. It was originally founded by Richard M. Schulze and James Wheeler in 1966 as an audio specialty store called Sound of Music. In 1983, it was rebranded under its current name with more emphasis placed on consumer electronics.

Internationally, Best Buy also operates in Canada and Mexico, and was formerly operational in China until February 2011 (when the faction was merged with Five Star) and in Europe until 2012. Its subsidiaries include Geek Squad, Magnolia Audio Video, and Pacific Sales. Best Buy also operates the Best Buy Mobile and Insignia brands in North America, plus Five Star in China. Best Buy sells cellular phones from Verizon Wireless, AT&T Mobility, Sprint Corporation, and Boost Mobile in the United States. In Canada, carriers include Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless, Telus Mobility, their fighter brands, and competing smaller carriers, such as SaskTel.

Best Buy was named "Company of the Year" by Forbes magazine in 2004, "Specialty Retailer of the Decade" by Discount Store News in 2001, ranked in the Top 10 of "America's Most Generous Corporations" by Forbes in 2005 (based on 2004 giving), and made Fortune magazine's list of "Most Admired Companies" in 2006.Hubert Joly currently serves as Best Buy's chairman and CEO. According to Yahoo! Finance, Best Buy is the largest specialty retailer in the United States consumer electronics retail industry. The company ranked No. 72 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.

Consumer Electronics Show

CES (formerly an acronym for Consumer Electronics Show) is an annual trade show organized by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA). Held in January at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States, the event typically hosts presentations of new products and technologies in the consumer electronics industry.

Consumer behaviour

Consumer behaviour is the study of individuals, groups, or organizations and all the activities associated with the purchase, use and disposal of goods and services, including the consumer's emotional, mental and behavioural responses that precede or follow these activities. Consumer behaviour emerged in the 1940s and 50s as a distinct sub-discipline in the marketing area.

Consumer behaviour is an inter-disciplinary social science that blends elements from psychology, sociology, social anthropology, anthropology, ethnography, marketing and economics, especially behavioural economics. It examines how emotions, attitudes and preferences affect buying behaviour. Characteristics of individual consumers such as demographics, personality lifestyles and behavioural variables such as usage rates, usage occasion, loyalty, brand advocacy, willingness to provide referrals, in an attempt to understand people's wants and consumption are all investigated in formal studies of consumer behaviour. The study of consumer behaviour also investigates the influences, on the consumer, from groups such as family, friends, sports, reference groups, and society in general.

The study of consumer behaviour is concerned with all aspects of purchasing behaviour – from pre-purchase activities through to post-purchase consumption, evaluation and disposal activities. It is also concerned with all persons involved, either directly or indirectly, in purchasing decisions and consumption activities including brand-influencers and opinion leaders. Research has shown that consumer behaviour is difficult to predict, even for experts in the field. However, new research methods such as ethnography and consumer neuroscience are shedding new light on how consumers make decisions.

Customer relationship management (CRM) databases have become an asset for the analysis of customer behaviour. The voluminous data produced by these databases enables detailed examination of behavioural factors that contribute to customer re-purchase intentions, consumer retention, loyalty and other behavioural intentions such as the willingness to provide positive referrals, become brand advocates or engage in customer citizenship activities. Databases also assist in market segmentation, especially behavioural segmentation such as developing loyalty segments, which can be used to develop tightly targeted, customized marketing strategies on a one-to-one basis. (Also see relationship marketing)

Consumer electronics

Consumer electronics or home electronics are electronic (analog or digital) equipments intended for everyday use, typically in private homes. Consumer electronics include devices used for entertainment (flatscreen TVs, DVD players, video games, remote control cars, etc.), communications (telephones, cell phones, e-mail-capable laptops, etc.), and home-office activities (e.g., desktop computers, printers, paper shredders, etc.). In British English, they are often called brown goods by producers and sellers, to distinguish them from "white goods" which are meant for housekeeping tasks, such as washing machines and refrigerators, although nowadays, these would be considered brown goods, some of these being connected to the Internet. In the 2010s, this distinction is not always present in large big box consumer electronics stores, such as Best Buy, which sell both entertainment, communication, and home office devices and kitchen appliances such as refrigerators.

Radio broadcasting in the early 20th century brought the first major consumer product, the broadcast receiver. Later products included telephones, televisions and calculators, then audio and video recorders and players, game consoles, personal computers and MP3 players. In the 2010s, consumer electronics stores often sell GPS, automotive electronics (car stereos), video game consoles, electronic musical instruments (e.g., synthesizer keyboards), karaoke machines, digital cameras, and video players (VCRs in the 1980s and 1990s, followed by DVD players and Blu-ray disc players). Stores also sell smart appliances, digital cameras, camcorders, cell phones, and smartphones. Some of the newer products sold include virtual reality head-mounted display goggles, smart home devices that connect home devices to the Internet and wearable technology such as Fitbit digital exercise watches and the Apple Watch smart watch.

In the 2010s, most consumer electronics have become based on digital technologies, and have largely merged with the computer industry in what is increasingly referred to as the consumerization of information technology. Some consumer electronics stores, such as Best Buy, have also begun selling office and baby furniture. Consumer electronics stores may be "bricks and mortar" physical retail stores, online stores, where the consumer chooses items on a website and pays online (e.g., Amazon). or a combination of both models (e.g., Best Buy has both bricks and mortar stores and an e-commerce website for ordering its products). The CEA (Consumer Electronics Association) estimated the value of 2015 consumer electronics sales at US$220 billion.

Consumer price index

A consumer price index (CPI) measures changes in the price level of market basket of consumer goods and services purchased by households.

The CPI is a statistical estimate constructed using the prices of a sample of representative items whose prices are collected periodically. Sub-indices and sub-sub-indices are computed for different categories and sub-categories of goods and services, being combined to produce the overall index with weights reflecting their shares in the total of the consumer expenditures covered by the index. It is one of several price indices calculated by most national statistical agencies. The annual percentage change in a CPI is used as a measure of inflation. A CPI can be used to index (i.e. adjust for the effect of inflation) the real value of wages, salaries, pensions, for regulating prices and for deflating monetary magnitudes to show changes in real values. In most countries, the CPI, along with the population census, is one of the most closely watched national economic statistics.

The index is usually computed monthly, or quarterly in some countries, as a weighted average of sub-indices for different components of consumer expenditure, such as food, housing, shoes, clothing, each of which is in turn a weighted average of sub-sub-indices. At the most detailed level, the elementary aggregate level, (for example, men's shirts sold in department stores in San Francisco), detailed weighting information is unavailable, so indices are computed using an unweighted arithmetic or geometric mean of the prices of the sampled product offers. (However, the growing use of scanner data is gradually making weighting information available even at the most detailed level.) These indices compare prices each month with prices in the price-reference month. The weights used to combine them into the higher-level aggregates, and then into the overall index, relate to the estimated expenditures during a preceding whole year of the consumers covered by the index on the products within its scope in the area covered. Thus the index is a fixed-weight index, but rarely a true Laspeyres index, since the weight-reference period of a year and the price-reference period, usually a more recent single month, do not coincide.

Ideally, the weights would relate to the composition of expenditure during the time between the price-reference month and the current month. There is a large technical economics literature on index formulae which would approximate this and which can be shown to approximate what economic theorists call a true cost of living index. Such an index would show how consumer expenditure would have to move to compensate for price changes so as to allow consumers to maintain a constant standard of living. Approximations can only be computed retrospectively, whereas the index has to appear monthly and, preferably, quite soon. Nevertheless, in some countries, notably in the United States and Sweden, the philosophy of the index is that it is inspired by and approximates the notion of a true cost of living (constant utility) index, whereas in most of Europe it is regarded more pragmatically.

The coverage of the index may be limited. Consumers' expenditure abroad is usually excluded; visitors' expenditure within the country may be excluded in principle if not in practice; the rural population may or may not be included; certain groups such as the very rich or the very poor may be excluded. Saving and investment are always excluded, though the prices paid for financial services provided by financial intermediaries may be included along with insurance.

The index reference period, usually called the base year, often differs both from the weight-reference period and the price reference period. This is just a matter of rescaling the whole time-series to make the value for the index reference-period equal to 100. Annually revised weights are a desirable but expensive feature of an index, for the older the weights the greater is the divergence between the current expenditure pattern and that of the weight reference-period.

Consumer protection

In regulatory jurisdictions that provide for it (comprising most or all developed countries with free market economies), consumer protection is a group of laws and organizations designed to ensure the rights of consumers as well as fair trade, competition and accurate information in the marketplace. The laws are designed to prevent the businesses that engage in fraud or specified unfair practices from gaining an advantage over competitors. They may also provide additional protection for those most vulnerable in society. Consumer protection laws are a form of government regulation that aim to protect the rights of consumers. For example, a government may require businesses to disclose detailed information about products—particularly in areas where safety or public health is an issue, such as food.

Consumer protection is linked to the idea of consumer rights and to the formation of consumer organizations, which help consumers make better choices in the marketplace and get help with consumer complaints. Other organizations that promote consumer protection include government organizations and self-regulating business organizations such as consumer protection agencies and organizations, ombudsmen, the Federal Trade Commission in America and Better Business Bureaus in America and Canada, etc.

A consumer is defined as someone who acquires goods or services for direct use or ownership rather than for resale or use in production and manufacturing.Consumer interests can also be protected by promoting competition in the markets which directly and indirectly serve consumers, consistent with economic efficiency, but this topic is treated in competition law. Consumer protection can also be asserted via non-government organizations and individuals as consumer activism.

Consumerism

Consumerism is a social and economic order that encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-increasing amounts. With the industrial revolution, but particularly in the 20th century, mass production led to an economic crisis: there was overproduction—the supply of goods would grow beyond consumer demand, and so manufacturers turned to planned obsolescence and advertising to manipulate consumer spending. In 1899, a book on consumerism published by Thorstein Veblen, called The Theory of the Leisure Class, examined the widespread values and economic institutions emerging along with the widespread "leisure time" in the beginning of the 20th century. In it Veblen "views the activities and spending habits of this leisure class in terms of conspicuous and vicarious consumption and waste. Both are related to the display of status and not to functionality or usefulness."In economics, consumerism may refer to economic policies which emphasise consumption. In an abstract sense, it is the consideration that the free choice of consumers should strongly orient the choice by manufacturers of what is produced and how, and therefore orient the economic organization of a society (compare producerism, especially in the British sense of the term). In this sense, consumerism expresses the idea not of "one man, one voice", but of "one dollar, one voice", which may or may not reflect the contribution of people to society.

In the almost complete absence of other sustained macro-political and social narratives—concern about global climate change notwithstanding—the pursuit of the 'good life' through practices of what is known as 'consumerism' has become one of the dominant global social forces, cutting across differences of religion, class, gender, ethnicity and nationality. It is the other side of the dominant ideology of market globalism and is central to what Manfred Steger calls the 'global imaginary'.

Credit

Credit (from Latin credit, "(he/she/it) believes") is the trust which allows one party to provide money or resources to another party wherein the second party does not reimburse the first party immediately (thereby generating a debt), but promises either to repay or return those resources (or other materials of equal value) at a later date. In other words, credit is a method of making reciprocity formal, legally enforceable, and extensible to a large group of unrelated people.The resources provided may be financial (e.g. granting a loan), or they may consist of goods or services (e.g. consumer credit). Credit encompasses any form of deferred payment. Credit is extended by a creditor, also known as a lender, to a debtor, also known as a borrower.

Customer-relationship management

Customer-relationship management (CRM) is an approach to manage a company's interaction with current and potential customers. It uses data analysis about customers' history with a company to improve business relationships with customers, specifically focusing on customer retention and ultimately driving sales growth.One important aspect of the CRM approach is the systems of CRM that compile data from a range of different communication channels, including a company's website, telephone, email, live chat, marketing materials and more recently, social media. Through the CRM approach and the systems used to facilitate it, businesses learn more about their target audiences and how to best cater to their needs.

Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Ann Warren (née Herring; born June 22, 1949) is an American politician and academic serving as the senior United States Senator from Massachusetts since 2013. Warren was formerly a prominent scholar specializing in bankruptcy law.

Warren was born and raised in a middle class family in Oklahoma. She is a graduate of the University of Houston and Rutgers Law School. Her career as an academic focused on bankruptcy law, where she focused primarily on empiric decision-making of the public following legal changes. Warren taught at several law schools, including the University of Houston, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Pennsylvania, and Harvard University.

Warren's initial foray into public policy began in 1995 when she worked to oppose what eventually became a 2005 act restricting bankruptcy access for individuals. Her profile rose due to her forceful stances in favor of more stringent banking regulations following the 2007–2008 financial crisis. She served as chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel of the Troubled Asset Relief Program and was instrumental in the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, for which she served as the first Special Advisor.

Warren challenged and defeated Republican incumbent Senator Scott Brown of Massachusetts in 2012. She was the keynote speaker of the 2016 Democratic National Convention and became Vice Chair of the Senate Democratic Caucus the following year. A noted progressive leader, Warren has focused on consumer protection, economic opportunity, and the social safety net while in the Senate. Some commentators describe her position as left-wing populism.Following her reelection to the Senate in 2018, Warren announced the formation of an exploratory committee for her campaign in the 2020 presidential election. On February 9, 2019, Warren officially announced her presidential campaign at a rally in Lawrence, Massachusetts. She is a candidate for the United States presidential election of 2020.

Fast-moving consumer goods

Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) or Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) are products that are sold quickly and at a relatively low cost. Examples include non-durable goods such as packaged foods, beverages, toiletries, over-the-counter drugs, and other consumables.Many fast-moving consumer goods have a short shelf life, either as a result of high consumer demand or as the result of fast deterioration. Some FMCGs, such as meats, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and baked goods are highly perishable. Other goods, such as pre-packaged foods, soft drinks, candies, and toiletries have high turnover rates. Sales are sometimes influenced by holiday and/or seasonal periods and also by the discounts offered.

Packaging is critical for FMCGs. To become successful in the highly dynamic and innovative FMCG segment, a company not only has to be acquainted with the consumer, brands, and logistics, but also, it has to have a sound understanding of packaging and product promotion. The packaging has to be both hygienic and customers-attracting. Logistics and distribution systems often require secondary and tertiary packaging to maximize efficiency. Unit or primary packaging protects products and extends shelf life while providing product information to consumers.

The profit margin on FMCG products can be relatively small, but they are generally sold in large quantities; thus, the cumulative profit on such products can be substantial. According to BASES, 84% of professionals working for fast-moving consumer goods are under more pressure to quickly bring new products to the market than they were five or ten years ago. With this in mind, 47% of those surveyed confessed that product testing suffers most when deadlines are accelerated.The growth of the internet over the past quarter century and the rise of the brand community phenomenon have contributed greatly to the demand for FMCGs. For example, according to German research group AGOF's internet facts, 73% of Germany's population is online. Additionally, 83.7% of internet users claim to use the web to search for information and 68.3% to shop online. But although most of the FMCGs are not ordered through online, rather, they are bought conveniently in a nearby department store.

Federal Trade Commission

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government, established in 1914 by the Federal Trade Commission Act. Its principal mission is the promotion of consumer protection and the elimination and prevention of anticompetitive business practices, such as coercive monopoly. It is headquartered in the Federal Trade Commission Building in Washington, D.C.

The Federal Trade Commission Act was one of President Woodrow Wilson's major acts against trusts. Trusts and trust-busting were significant political concerns during the Progressive Era. Since its inception, the FTC has enforced the provisions of the Clayton Act, a key antitrust statute, as well as the provisions of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 41 et seq. Over time, the FTC has been delegated with the enforcement of additional business regulation statutes and has promulgated a number of regulations (codified in Title 16 of the Code of Federal Regulations).

Final good

A consumer good or final good is any commodity that is produced or consumed by the consumer to satisfy current wants or needs. Consumer goods are ultimately consumed, rather than used in the production of another good. For example, a microwave oven or a bicycle that is sold to a consumer is a final good or consumer good, but the components that are sold to be used in those goods are intermediate goods. For example, textiles or transistors can be used to make some further goods.

When used in measures of national income and output, the term "final goods" includes only new goods. For instance, the GDP excludes items counted in an earlier year to prevent double counting of production that is based on resales of the same item. In that context, the economic definition of goods includes what are commonly known as services.

Manufactured goods are goods that have been processed in any way. As such, they are the opposite of raw materials, but they include intermediate goods as well as final goods.

Home economics

Home economics, domestic science or home science is a field of study that deals with the relationship between individuals, families, communities, and the environment in which they live.

List of companies of India

India is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country (with over 1.2 billion people), and the most populous democracy in the world.

In 2015, the Indian economy was the world's seventh largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption, malnutrition, and inadequate public healthcare.

For further information on the types of business entities in this country and their abbreviations, see "Business entities in India".

Retail

Retail is the process of selling consumer goods or services to customers through multiple channels of distribution to earn a profit. Retailers satisfy demand identified through a supply chain. The term "retailer" is typically applied where a service provider fills the small orders of a large number of individuals, who are end-users, rather than large orders of a small number of wholesale, corporate or government clientele. Shopping generally refers to the act of buying products. Sometimes this is done to obtain final goods, including necessities such as food and clothing; sometimes it takes place as a recreational activity. Recreational shopping often involves window shopping and browsing: it does not always result in a purchase.

Retail markets and shops have a very ancient history, dating back to antiquity. Some of the earliest retailers were itinerant peddlers. Over the centuries, retail shops were transformed from little more than "rude booths" to the sophisticated shopping malls of the modern era.

Most modern retailers typically make a variety of strategic level decisions including the type of store, the market to be served, the optimal product assortment, customer service, supporting services and the store's overall market positioning. Once the strategic retail plan is in place, retailers devise the retail mix which includes product, price, place, promotion, personnel and presentation. In the digital age, an increasing number of retailers are seeking to reach broader markets by selling through multiple channels, including both bricks and mortar and online retailing. Digital technologies are also changing the way that consumers pay for goods and services. Retailing support services may also include the provision of credit, delivery services, advisory services, stylist services and a range of other supporting services.

Retail shops occur in a diverse range of types and in many different contexts – from strip shopping centres in residential streets through to large, indoor shopping malls. Shopping streets may restrict traffic to pedestrians only. Sometimes a shopping street has a partial or full roof to create a more comfortable shopping environment – protecting customers from various types of weather conditions such as extreme temperatures, winds or precipitation. Forms of non-shop retailing include online retailing (a type of electronic-commerce used for business-to-consumer (B2C) transactions) and mail order.

Retail banking

Retail banking, also known as consumer banking, is the provision of services by a bank to the general public, rather than to companies, corporations or other banks, which are often described as wholesale banking. Banking services which are regarded as retail include provision of savings and transactional accounts, mortgages, personal loans, debit cards, and credit cards. Retail banking is also distinguished from investment banking or commercial banking. It may also refer to a division or department of a bank which deals with individual customers.

In the U.S., the term commercial bank is used for a normal bank to distinguish it from an investment bank. After the Great Depression, the Glass–Steagall Act restricted normal banks to banking activities, and investment banks were limited to engaging capital market activities. That distinction was repealed in the 1990s. Commercial bank can also refer to a bank or a division of a bank that deals mostly with deposits and loans from corporations or large businesses, as opposed to individual members of the public (retail banking).

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