The percentage of working women in India is growing at a steady pace. This is mainly because of the development in communication systems and growth of educational opportunities given to women. Because of this growth of working women, the women now-a-days also have an increased purchasing power. Due to this, industries that are directly related to women like cosmetics etc. have seen a major boost. Also, toiletries, food and beverages etc. have seen a growth.
The middle class house wife is generally educated and is the purchasing agent for some of the products the family buys. She is also the “gatekeeper” for many products like new cooking medium, fast food etc. that cannot enter the house without her clearance. She also decides purchases meant for children.
To get a much better understanding of the Indian house wife, consider the following characteristics of her buying decisions:
Cautious, but not averse to change:
The middle class house wife is generally educated, earns her own money or has to use money given to her on a fixed budget. This makes the middle class house wife a discriminating and cautious buyer. However, she is not averse to new ideas and things. She is willing to try new things but she will not adopt any product instantly. She will make a sample purchase, check with people who use the product, listen for guidance and then finally she may go in for purchasing the product.
Quality as well as cost cautious:
The middle class house wife is a quality as well as cost cautious buyer. She will try to purchase products that will last her for a long time. She will try to get “millage” out of every rupee she spends. She is less likely to purchase “use and throw” type of products. Besides being quality conscious, he also is cost conscious. Before buying a particular product she will first check the price with other sellers and will then go in for the lowest price.
Because of being quality and cost conscious, extra features like re-usable containers will influence her buying decision. Bonus prizes, coupons, rebates etc. will definitely attract her attention.
Instead of advertising she relies on word-of-mouth communication. She is interested in knowing what her neighbor or colleges are using. Even after she purchases a product she seeks reassurance about making the right purchase decision.
As time passes the house wife is getting used to more and more leisure though the use of modern gadgets like washing machines and other such house hold items. She will be interested in new innovations that reduce her work time even more. She may not be able to afford all the modern gadgets that are available in the market but they still hold her interest because they are a potential for saving time and avoiding drudgery.
Sense of grooming:
Sense of beauty is a strong motive force behind several of her purchases. Soap or shampoo, vanishing cream or cleansing milk, perfumes or hair oil – selecting her brand is greatly influenced by her sense of grooming. She is generally fashion loving however she is not fashion crazy. A strong sense of traditionalism runs thought her personality. Products or ideas that uproot her basic personality or values will not find acceptance with her.