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Background of the Study

Discuss about the Impact of Product Diversity on Consumer Buying Behavior for a Case Study of Retail Food Group Limited
 

The purpose of this study is to identify the impact of the product diversity on consumers’ buying behavior in food retain industry. In this study, the selected organization is Retail Food Group Limited. Product diversity refers to the process of expanding product range for increasing business profitability (Coma et al., 2016). In case of the food industry, the organizations are providing different range of food products for influencing different cultural people. On the other hand, a vast product range influences buying behavior of the consumers by increasing consumers’ spending. In this study, a systematical process will be followed for getting accurate research result.

Product diversification refers to the process of increasing product range, which increases business opportunity of an organization. This study will investigate regarding the impact of product diversity on consumers’ behavior. Product diversification is a globally acknowledge approach, which helps organizations to increase overall spending of consumer (Chen et al., 2016). On the other hand, consumers buying behavior refers to the consumers’ preferences, attitude and intentions while making the purchase decision. In recent days, different organizations have adopted product diversification strategy for maintaining sustainable business (Zhang et al., 2016). In this process, an organization can maintain sustainable profitability from one product, even if other products reach to the mature stage of product life cycle. This study will further investigate how availability of different product influences the consumers to increase their purchase unit.  

Retail Food Group is a food retail chain of Australian market established in 1989. The company provides franchise opportunity to the Australian local businesses for increasing product availability in Australian market. In order to influence consumers’ buying behavior, the organization provides a vast range of product to the consumers. This strategy helps the organization to attract franchises along with consumers in Australian market.  

What is the Issue?

Diversified product helps an organization to attract consumers towards the brand. On the other hand, it is highly important to establish the brand image of the organization for improving perceived value of the consumers (Kaushalya & Fernando, 2015). However, offering a vast range of products prevents the organizations to establish high brand value, as the consumers may find difficulties to understand the offerings under the brand. Therefore, it can affect the consumers’ buying behavior negatively (Pandey & Verma, 2015). Therefore, it is highly important to understand the way product diversity affects consumers’ buying behavior.    

Background of the Organization

Why is it an Issue?

Consumers are sometimes influenced by the brand image while making the purchase decision. However, a diverse product range prevents the consumers to recall the brand name while making the purchase decision (Kwak, Jaju & Zinkhan, 2015). In order to establish strong brand image of diversified product range, it is important to implement umbrella-branding strategy. In case if an organization fails to conduct efficient branding strategy, then it will be difficult for the company to influence buying behavior of coinsumers.   

What is the Issue Now?

Now days, product diversification is a globally acknowledge strategy in which organizations are offering vast range of products in same category, which increase the product line (Morrison, 2015). In this manner, consumers’ spending can be increased in an effective manner. In food retail sector, it also increases consumers’ spending time as well as the consumers’ spending. However, a vast range of products prevents the organizations from establishing strong brand image.

What could be the research shade light?

This study will investigate the importance of product diversification and the issues faced by the Retail Food Group. It will help the company to influence the consumers’ buying behavior more efficiently with the help of efficient branding strategy (Kumar & Kapoor, 2015). The findings of this study will helps the organization to improve the product strategy even better.

The aim of the research is to investigate the impact of product diversification on consumers’ buying behavior.

The objectives of the research are as follows:

  • To investigate the importance of product diversity in food retail industry
  • To critically evaluate the impact of product diversification on consumers’ buying behavior
  • To identify the issues faced by Retail Food Group while implementing product diversification for influencing consumers’ buying behavior
  • To provide suitable recommendation to the Retail Food Group for reducing negative impact of product diversification 

The research questions are as follows:

  • What is the importance of product diversity in food retail industry?
  • What is the impact if product diversity on consumers’ buying behavior?
  • What are the issues faced by Retail Food Group while implementing product diversification strategy for influencing consumers’ buying behavior?
  • What should be the possible procedures for improving product diversification strategy of Retail Food Group?

H0: Product diversification does not have any impact on consumers’ buying behavior

H1: Product diversification does have huge impact on consumers’ buying behavior

In order to obtain accurate research result, appropriate research structure will be followed in this study. Following is the structure of the research study in which the researcher will conduct the research.

Introduction

In this section, the introductory part of the study will be provided. Moreover, this section of the study will consist of the research objectives, questions and hypotheses along with the rationale of the study.

Literature review

This section of this study will consist of a vast literature regarding product diversity and its impact on the consumers’ buying behavior. Moreover, different models and theories will be evaluated in this section.

Research methodology

This section of this study will consist of the chosen research methods. The researcher will also provide justifications for the chosen research methods. Implementing appropriate research methods will help the researcher to obtain accurate research result.

Findings and Analysis

In this section, the researcher will accumulate primary information regarding the research topic. Moreover, the researcher will evaluate the gathered data with efficient analytical tools such as statistical tools and focus group analysis tool.

Conclusion and Recommendations

In this section, the researcher will provide conclusion based on the research findings. Additionally, the researcher will provide suitable recommendations to the organization for improving product diversification strategy of Retail Food Group.       

Table 1: Structure of the dissertation

Consumers’ buying behavior refers to the attitude, perception and preference of the consumers. On the other hand, product diversification is a strategy, which allows the consumers to choose the required product as per needs and requirements. According to the previous research is consumers’ buying behavior, different researchers have shown that buying behavior is a factor, which is influenced by the purchasing decision process (Phan & Vu, 2015). On the other hand, previous studies emphasize that it is not possible to measure consumers’ buying behavior accurately. Organizations just perceive the buying behavior for predicting the purchase decision of the consumers. On the other hand, a diversified product range helps the organizations to attract consumers from competitive market.      

Rationale of the Study

Product diversification is a strategy of increasing range of products in which an organization provides different types of products in same category. In case of food retail industry, organizations provide different food products rather than offering same product. Now days, this approach is adopted by the organizations for maintaining business sustainability with diverse product range (Farooq et al., 2015). In this approach, if a particular product fails to attract consumers, then other products will help the organization to maintain sales figure.    

Consumers’ buying behavior refers to the attitude and perception of the consumers while making purchase decision. In order to determine the required product, consumers follow a systematic process in which the first step is identification of requirements. There are different factors that influence behavior of consumers (Kim, 2015). The most important factor, which influences behavior of the consumers, is cultural background of the consumers. The psychological characteristic of consumers is another factor in which consumers take the purchase decision based on the product value. 

The changing trend of business environment influences the consumers to take the ultimate purchase decision in an elongated manner. In this process, consumers follow five steps such as “need recognition”, “information search”, “and alternative evaluation”, “purchase decision”, “post-purchase behavior” (Chen et al., 2016). Following is the process undertaken by the consumers for making the purchase decision.

Need Recognition: In this step, consumers identify their requirement in terms of product or service. This step is one of the most important phases of decision decision-making process. If there is no need, then there will be no purchase (Zhang et al., 2016). In case of food retail industry, the consumers first identify the type of food based on their needs and requirements. Sometimes, the consumers choose the food type depending on their cultural aspects.

Information search: In this step, consumers gather product information in order to obtain the quality product (Kaushalya & Fernando, 2015). In other word, consumers seek for additional information in order to resolve their problem. For example, consumers can seek information regarding different kinds of product.

Alternative evaluation: This phase of decision-making process helps the consumers to evaluate the identified product with other brands. This process helps the consumers to obtain quality product at low price (Pandey & Verma, 2015). This step further helps the consumers to increase product value and therefore, this is the most important phase in which organizations try to influence the consumers.

Aim of the Research

Purchase decision: After going through the above stages, consumers take the final purchase decision of availing a particular product (Kwak, Jaju & Zinkhan, 2015). In case of food sector, consumers have the ability to switch brand frequently due to high bargain power of consumers.

Post-purchase behavior: This phase of decision-making process depends on the satisfaction level of the consumers after availing a particular product (Morrison, 2015). Therefore, it can be said that post-purchase behavior tends the consumers to decide regarding whether they will continue with the same brand or not.        

Culture of an individual refers to the faith, behavior and perspectives, which influences the buying behavior. For example, an individual can be driven by the brand image of an organization. On the other hand, an individual may select a product depending on the quality and price (Phan & Vu, 2015). Moreover, social class, income level, occupation and education of an individual are the parameters, which determine buying behavior of the consumers. According to the previous researches, food retail organizations identify the cultural aspects of the consumers for identifying the purchase decision-making process (Farooq et al., 2015). If product diversification is being considered, then it can be said that consumers from different cultural aspects prefer different products and therefore, with diversified product range organizations will be able to influence a vast range of consumers’ buying behavior (Banerjee & Banerjee, 2015). 

The overall literature review shows that food retail organizations of Australian market have adopted product diversification in order to satisfy different cultural groups. This section of the study emphasize that product diversification is the most effective approach, which helps organizations to reduce certain risk factors caused market forces. 

This section of the study determines the research methods applied in this research. Appropriate study method will help the researcher to get accurate research outcome. This research will be based on primary research method (Melling, 2015). It will help the researcher to gather relevant information from the consumers and management of Retail Food Group Limited.

In order to conduct this research, the researcher will select appropriate research methods such as “research philosophy”, “research approach”, “research purpose” and “research strategy”. As this research is based on primary data collection process, the researcher will select “positivism research philosophy”, “deductive research approach”, and “descriptive research purpose” and “interview and survey strategy” (Flick, 2015). These research tools will help the researcher to reduce negative impact of the time and budget constraint in an effective manner. Moreover, the researcher will select 50 consumers and 4 managers of Retail Food Limited in order to conduct the data collection process.  

Research Objectives

There are two types of data collection process such as “primary data collection” and “secondary data collection” In case of primary data collection process, interview and survey are the data collection tools (Mansell, 2015). On the other hand, in secondary data collection process, researchers gather relevant information from authentic journals, articles and websites. In this study, the researcher will conduct primary data collection process in which the researcher will adopt qualitative and quantitative approach (Youssef & Youssef, 2016).

In this study, the researcher will implement statistical analysis tool for analyzing the primary data. On the other hand, the researcher will implement focus group analysis for analyzing the qualitative data (Ardrey et al., 2016). The researcher will also implement case study analysis for conducting the secondary data collection process; this process will help the researcher to conduct an efficient literature review.

Activity

1st week

2nd to 3rd week

4th to 5th week

6th to 8th week

9th to 12th week

13th to 18th week

Introduction

Literature Review

Research Methods

Data Collection and Findings

Conclusion and Recommendations

                     

Table 2: Time Table

Conclusion and Future work

Conclusion

After conducting the literature review, it can be concluded that product diversity influenced the purchase decision-making process of the consumers in an effective manner. This research will identify the extent in which diversified product range influences consumers’ buying behavior. The data collection process chosen for this study is appropriate for this research topic. In order to achieve the research objective, the researcher will create qualitative and quantitative questions based on the research questions.   

This study can be more effective by improving the literature review. In this section, a vast range of previous research needs to be evaluated in order to gather efficient knowledge regarding the research topic. Apart from that, it is highly important to comply with the ethical constraints for gathering non-manipulative information from the respondents. Additionally, the research can be improved with efficient data analytical tools. 

Reference list

Ardrey, J., Desmond, N., Tolhurst, R. & Mortimer, K., (2016). The Cooking and Pneumonia Study (CAPS) in Malawi: A Nested Pilot of Photovoice Participatory Research Methodology. PloS one, 11(6), p.e0156500

Banerjee, T., & Banerjee, A. (2015). Evaluating the Purchase Process of Household Appliances Accounting for Consumers’ Attitudes towards Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Consumption Behavior (No. WP 2015-06-01). Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Research and Publication Department

Chen, H., Li, X., Zeng, S., Ma, H., & Lin, H. (2016). Does state capitalism matter in firm internationalization? Pace, rhythm, location choice, and product diversity. Management Decision, 54(6)

Coma, M., Vilchez-Vargas, R., Roume, H., Jauregui, R., Pieper, D., & Rabaey, K. (2016). Product diversity linked to substrate usage in chain elongation by mixed culture fermentation. Environmental science & technology

Farooq, Q., Shafique, N., Khurshid, M. M., & Ahmad, N. (2015). Impact of comic factor in tv ads on buying behavior of university students.International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences, 8(1), 12-20

Flick, U. (2015). Introducing research methodology: A beginner's guide to doing a research project. Sage

Kaushalya, A. M., & Fernando, P. I. N. (2015). Brand Image Impact on Consumers’ Buying Behavior: Special Reference to Fermented Dairy Products

Kim, S. W. (2015). The impact of customer buying behavior on the optimal allocation decisions. International Journal of Production Economics, 163, 71-88

Kumar, N., & Kapoor, S. (2015). Does the consumers’ buying behavior differ for vegetarian and non-vegetarian food products? Evidences from an emerging market. British Food Journal, 117(8), 1998-2016

Kwak, H., Jaju, A., & Zinkhan, G. M. (2015). Astrology: Its influence on consumers’ buying patterns and consumers’ evaluations of products and services. In Proceedings of the 2000 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) Annual Conference (pp. 94-98). Springer International Publishing

Mansell, W. (2015). Classification of psychopathology and unifying theory: The ingredients of a Darwinian paradigm shift in research methodology

Melling, R. (2015). Single case research methodology: applications in Special Education and Behavioral Sciences. Educational Psychology in Practice, 31(1), 106-107

Morrison, M. M. (2015). Compulsive Buying Behavior: Terminology and an Appucation to New Media such as the Internet. In Proceedings of the 1998 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) Annual Conference (pp. 344-348). Springer International Publishing

Pandey, M., & Verma, R. (2015). Factors Influencing the Buying Behavior of Consumers Towards Organized Retail Stores in Jalandhar, Punjab. IUP Journal of Marketing Management, 14(1), 51

Phan, T. T. H., & Vu, P. A. (2015). The Impact of Marketing Mix Elements on Food Buying Behavior: A Study of Supermarket Consumers in Vietnam.International Journal of Business and Management, 10(10), 206

Youssef, E. M., & Youssef, M. A. (2016). A critical investigation into cross-cultural research methodology: some insights and literature review.International Journal of Business Excellence, 9(4), 441-462

Zhang, J., Bowling, J. J., Smithson, D., Clark, J., Jacob, M. R., Khan, S. I., ... & Zaki, M. A. (2016). Diversity-oriented natural product platform identifies plant constituents targeting Plasmodium falciparum. Malaria journal, 15(1), 1

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