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ASSESSING THE INFLUENCE OF CULTURAL FACTORS ON CONSUMER BEHAVIOR IN CAMEROON

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ASSESSING THE INFLUENCE OF CULTURAL FACTORS ON CONSUMER BEHAVIOR IN CAMEROON

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

Buying behavior is a collection of attitudes that define the patterns of decisions made by customers. However, variety of external situational settings influence customer choices in addition to the fundamental internal elements that are known to influence purchasing behavior.  Furthermore, consumer behavior is influenced by both outside incentives and their purchasing consciousness, which may lead to a change in behavior.The culture of the society, which includes conventions, religion, holidays, class, lifestyle, and other subcultures, affects how individual consumers purchase and utilize goods as well as providing an explanation for the actions of consumer groups. Conceptually, culture is that complex whole, which includes knowledge, belief, art, law, morals, customs and any other capabilities and habits acquired by humans as members of society. Culture influences the pattern of living, consumption, and decision-making by individuals. Beyond that, it  can be acquired from the family, from the region or from all that has been around us while we were growing up and learning the ways of the world (Kotler, 2020). However, culture forms a boundary within which an individual thinks and acts.  Culture is an extremely critical and all pervasive influence in our life. Given this broad and pervasive nature of culture, its study generally requires a detailed examination of the total society; it encompasses all aspects of a society such as its religion, knowledge, language, laws, customs, traditions, music, art, technology, work patterns, products, plus all other artifacts that gives a society its distinctiveness. However, because the objective of this study is to understand the influence of culture on consumer behaviour, greater emphasize will be on the specific dimensions of culture that make it a powerful force in regulating consumer purchase behaviour. According to  Schiffman and Kanuk (2019), culture is the sum total of learned beliefs, values, attitude and that serve to guide and direct the consumer behaviour of all members of a society.  In the same view, Page (2018), defined human culture as a group of complex belief and value system, and artifacts handed down through generations as determinants and influences upon human buying behaviour within a given society” . He further added that much of human behaviour is determined by culture, but it may require contact with another culture, with different beliefs and value systems in order to understand the extent to which it influences. Nevertheless, the beliefs and values components of these definitions refer to the accumulated feelings and priorities that individuals have about things and possessions. 

According to Delener (2019), cultural beliefs and values can therefore be said to be mental images that affect a wide range of specific attitudes, which in turn influence the way a person is likely to behave in a specific situation e.g. purchasing new clothes; the evaluation, choosing among alternatives and finally paying for a particular type of clothes is largely a function of core cultural beliefs and values. Similarly, Kotler, (2021) asserts that core beliefs and values in a society have high degree of persistence, they shape and colour more specific attitudes and behaviour found in everyday life. Additionally, cultural researchers have acknowledged culture as a primary factor shaping consumer behavior. The cultural background of consumers not only defines their desires and requirements but also impacts the formulation of marketing strategies to address their behaviors, attitudes, and preferences. Also, individuals and groups sharing similar cultural backgrounds develop distinct needs, which are evident in how they prioritize product attributes affecting their purchasing decisions. Therefore, a survey will be conducted to assess the influence of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon

1.2 Statement of the Problem

 Cultural factors appear to wield a significant influence on consumer behavior, serving as fundamental determinants of their desires and needs, which in turn shape the products they seek to fulfill those needs. For instance, clothing, a ubiquitous product across societies, reflects cultural beliefs and norms. However, the types of clothing an individual choose are heavily influenced by cultural considerations, dictating what attire is appropriate for different genders, settings such as home or workplace, and occasions. Furthermore, given the pivotal role culture plays in consumer purchasing decisions, it is evident that it significantly impacts consumer behavior. Thus, it is in the light of these that the study seeks to assess the influence of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon

1.3  Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to assess the influence of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon. Specifically, the study will;

1.Determine the extent to which cultural factors has influenced consumer behavior in Cameroon

2.Investigate cultural factors which influences the purchasing decisions of consumers in Cameroon

3.Investigate the impact of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

1.What is the extent to which cultural factors has influenced consumer behavior in Cameroon?

2.What are the cultural factors that influences the purchasing decisions of consumers in Cameroon?

3.What are the impact of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon

1.5  Research Hypotheses

Ho: There are no significant relationship between cultural factors and consumer behavior in Cameroon.

Ha: There are significant relationship between cultural factors and consumer behavior in Cameroon.

1.6  Significance of the Study 

 Additionally, subsequent researchers will use it as a literature review. This means that other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to investigate the strategies for improving access to finance for women entrepreneurs in Cameroon

1.7 Scope of the study

The scope of this study is to investigate financial crime; it's causes and implications on the growth of small businesses in Cameroon. Empirically, this study will determine the extent to which cultural factors has influenced consumer behavior in Cameroon, investigate cultural factors which influences the purchasing decisions of consumers in Cameroon and the impact of cultural factors on consumer behavior in Cameroon

Geographically, the study will be delimited to residents of Douala, Cameroon.

1.8 Limitation of the study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. In addition, there was the element of researcher bias. Here, the researcher possessed some biases that may have been reflected in the way the data was collected, the type of people interviewed or sampled, and how the data gathered was interpreted thereafter. The potential for all this to influence the findings and conclusions could not be downplayed. 

More so, the findings of this study are limited to the sample population in the study area, hence they may not be suitable for use in comparison to other schools, local governments, states, and other countries in the world.

 1.9 Definition of Terms

Cultural factors: refer to the social, ethnic, religious, and geographical influences that shape the beliefs, values, customs, and norms of individuals within a society or community.

Consumers: are individuals or households who engage in the process of acquiring, using, and disposing of products or services to satisfy their needs and wants.

Consumers behaviour: these are actions, attitudes, and decision-making processes that individuals engage in when selecting, purchasing, using, or disposing of products or services.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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