Then And Now Assignment

729 words - 3 pages

In the textbook, Consumer Behavior, the term consumer behavior is defined as, “the behavior that consumers display in searching for, purchasing, using, evaluating, and disposing of products and services that they expect will satisfy their needs” (5). For centuries, consumer behavior has been transforming into what we know today. New advertising technology and ways of purchasing products has advanced, and has affected the way consumers make purchases. There are many ways in which consumer behavior has changed, yet also remained the same from the past to the present and this paper will discuss just six of them.
In early 19th century, purchasing products from somewhere was almost impossible, especially if they lived in the rural part of the United States. General stores were common but many people still lived too far away so they resorted to making their own goods. In cities in the mid-late 1800’s department stores began to pop up. A few examples are: Sears Roebuck and Co., J.C. Penney, and Montgomery Ward (“History of U.S. Textile Industry”). Since there were multiple departments under one roof, consumers did not have to search multiple stores to find the items they needed. This was exciting to those who lived in the cities and had money to purchase their products. It was a brilliant tactic and buyers began shopping more. Rural America was still too far away to come without traveling for days so they had to continue to do without. It was not until the department stores started producing catalogs in the late 1800’s that people in rural areas could start purchasing products. Sears Roebuck and Co. created mail order, which made shopping from home a new and easy way to buy things. Sales shot up because of this invention and psychological factors such as boredom and the curiosity for new items fueled their purchases (“Consumer Behavior”). The advisements in the catalogs also caught the eye of readers and visually sold them the products. Two of the four environmental factors also played a huge part in the purchases of the past. The growth of the middle class (socio-cultural) affected the purchases consumers made (“History of U.S. Textile Industry”). Before the addition of the middle class, there...

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