SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPULSE PURCHASE: LITERATURE REVIEW

LITERATURE REVIEW

Consumer Behaviour has received considerable attention from scholars. Still, not surprisingly, conclusive empirical evidence has yet to emerge from those past studies (Bagozzi, 1999; Appelt, 2010). New product development is both risky and involves a difficult venture because of a high degree of uncertainty concerning the customer needs (Wind and Mahajan, 1997; Gupta, 2010). Only a small proportion of new products developed satisfy the customer wants; hence it will be highly imperative to understand how customers react to new products and what drives them to purchase a new product. Along with the fact that impulse behaviour of customers is still a mystery, it is important to include this criterion with other driving forces of making customers purchase the new products. Without this significantly relevant factor of impulse purchase, the study of consumer behaviour remains inconclusive.

Impulse buying is “the degree to which an individual is likely to make unintended, immediate, and unreflective purchases (e.g. impulse purchases)” (Weun et al., 1998). According to Bellenger and Korgaonkar (1980), when consumers shop in a large department store, 50 per cent of impulse purchases were for apparel, where impulse purchases range from 27-62 per cent of the total sales. Previous research by Weinberg and Gottwald (1982) speculates that those who impulsively bought a product were significantly more amused, delighted, and enthusiastic than non-buyers. It has been found that consumer innovators of new product users are generally risk takers. Rook (1987) mentioned that there are various psychological motivations for impulse buying that people might experience during shopping. Considering this wide variety of factors and some seemingly inconsistent findings, the conclusion must be that there is no simple model of antecedents that could explain this type of consumer behaviour (Jihye, Lennon & Stoel, 2005). In fact, impulse buying behaviour has been part of a complex and dynamic psychological functioning and can be considered as a form of psychological self regulation (Vohs & Faber, 2007). It makes sense to apply the self-regulation perception on impulse buying (Verplanken and Sato, 2011).

This research was set find out the factors that trigger impulse buying by drawing on regulatory focus theory proposed by Higgins (1997, 1998 and 2002). This theory proposes two distinct basic motives, each of which is associated with a different self-regulation strategy. The first motive is based on the desire to reach out for good things. This motive makes a person focus on accomplishments, growth, hopes, wishes, or aspirations and is referred to as a promotion focus. A promotion focus induces a state of eagerness to attain advancement and gains and thus regulates the presence or absence of rewards and positive outcomes from the purchase. The second motive is based on the need to avoid bad things (Verplanken and Sato, 2010). This motive makes people focus on duties, obligations or responsibilities, and is referred to as a prevention focus. A prevention focus induces a state of vigilance so as to avoid pain and losses and thus regulates the presence or absence of punishments and negative outcomes from the purchase (Verplanken and Sato, 2010). The nature of the impulse buying is not dependent on consumer’s intention. Therefore, based on the above, it can be proposed that, H1: Impulse purchase has a positive relationship with new product purchase.