The Consumer Adoption Process

Marketers must understand this process in order to build an effective strategy for early market penetration.

The Consumer Adoption Process

This process describes how potential customers: Learn about new products, try them and Adopt or reject them. Adoption is an individual’s decision to become a regular user of a product. The consumer adoption process is later followed by the consumer-loyalty.


Stages in the Adoption Process:

The consumer adoption process focuses on the mental process through which an individual passes from first hearing about an innovation to final adoption.

Adopters of new products have been observed to move through the following five stages: –

  1. Awareness – The consumer becomes aware of the new product but lacks information about it
  2. Interest – The consumer is stimulated to seek information about the product
  3. Evaluation – The consumer considers the costs and benefits of using the product
  4. Trial – this is usually based on the evaluation to buy to estimate the value of using the product.
  5. Adoption-if the trial is favorable,  Adopt the new product and use it regularly.


Adopter Categories

1) Innovators – this are the first 2.5% of the buyers who adopt new products. They comprise of the young, better educated and consumers who have higher incomes. They are more willing to take risks.

2) Early adopters – these are the next 13.5% of buyers and are guided by respect and are the opinion leaders in the communities. They adopt new ideas early but carefully e.g. preachers, musicians etc.

3) Early majority – these are the deliberate consumers. They are the leaders but are careful in what they purchase. They represent 34% of the buyers.

4) Late majority – these are the skeptical or suspicious buyers. They adopt an innovation only after the early majority has tried it. They represent 34% of buyers.

5) Laggards – these are the traditionalist or conservative people. They are suspicious of changes and adopt an innovation only when it has become something of a tradition itself. They represent 16 % of the buyers

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