Factors affecting Rural consumer behaviour: Social factor, Cultural factors, Technological factors, Lifestyle, Personality

27th March 2021 0 By indiafreenotes

Social Class

Social class is one of the main concepts in socio-cultural environment. A society consists of different social classes and all social classes are determined by income, occupation, literacy level etc. of its members. Each class has its own class values according to lifestyle, behavior etc. These values have a strong consumption pattern and paying behavior of the member of the class.

Influence of culture: Culture and tradition influence perception and buying behaviour. For example, the preference in respect of color, size and shape are often the result of cultural factors. Rural consumers’ perception of products is strongly influenced by cultural factors.

Geographic locations: Rural consumer behavior is also influenced by the geographic location of the consumers. For example, nearness to feeder towns and industrial projects influences the buying behavior of consumers in the respective clusters of villages. We are discussing this aspect in detail in the section on market segmentation in rural markets. To cite one more example of how geographic location affects buying behavior, we can point out the fact that the lack of electricity in many rural households acts as a barrier to the purchase of certain consumer durables.

Income level:

Normally, the higher the income level, the higher is the level of spending and vice versa. But this may not be the case in developing countries, especially in the rural areas.

Involvement of others in the purchase: Involvement of others in the purchase in the purchase decision is yet another relevant factor in this regard. There has been a change here in recent years. In the past, the head of the family used to make the purchase decision all by himself. In contrast, the involvement of the other members of the family in the purchase decision has been growing in recent years. An increase in literacy coupled with greater access to information has resulted in this development. The marketer has to reckon the role of the influencers while sizing up the buying behavior of rural consumers.

Exposure to urban lifestyles: Extent of exposure of rural consumers to urban lifestyles also influences their buying behavior. An increased exposure and interaction with urban communities has been the trend in recent years.

Places of purchase: Buying behavior of rural consumer also varies depending on the place of purchase. Different segments of rural buyers buy their requirements from different places/outlets. Some buy from the village shopkeepers; some from village markets/fairs; others buy from the town that serves as the feeder to the rural area. It is also seen that the same buyer buys different requirements from different laces.

The way the consumer uses the products: The situation in which the consumers utilize the product also influences their buying. The example of lack of electricity affecting buying behavior illustrates this point as well. Lack of electricity automatically increases the purchase of batteries by rural consumers. Similarly, since rural consumers cannot use washing powders/detergent powders that much, as they wash their clothes in streams or ponds, they go in more for washing bars and detergent cakes.

Personal Factors:

The personal factors such as age, occupation, lifestyle, social and economic status and the gender of a consumer may affect the buying decisions of the consumers individually or collectively.

Age factor:

The age factor greatly influences the buying behaviour. For example, teenagers prefer trendy clothes, whereas office executives prefer sober and formal clothing.


The consumer behaviour varies across gender. For example, girls prefer certain feminine colours such as pink, purple and peach, whereas boys go for blue, black and brown.


Highly educated persons may spend on books, personal care products, and so on. But a person with low or no education may spend less on books and more on personal grooming products.

Psychological Factors:

A person’s buying behaviour is influenced by the psychological factors such as the following:

  1. Learning:

It refers to changes in individual behaviour that are caused by information and experi­ence. For example, when a customer buys a new brand of apparels, and is satisfied by its use, then they are more likely to buy the same brand the next time. Through learning, people acquire beliefs and attitudes, which in turn influence the buying behaviour.

  1. Attitude:

It is human tendency to respond in a given manner to a particular situation or object or idea. Consumers may develop a positive, or a negative, or a neutral attitude towards certain products or brands, which in turn affects their buying behaviour.

  1. Motives:

A motive is the inner drive that motivates a person to act or behave in a certain manner. A marketer must identify the buying motives of the target customers and influence them to act posi­tively towards the marketed products.

  1. Pride and possession
  2. Love and affection
  3. Comfort and convenience
  4. Sex and romance