Economics and marketing
A consumer is one that buys good for consumption and not for resale or commercial purpose. The consumer is an individual who pays some amount of money for the thing required to consume goods and services. As such, consumers play a vital role in the economic system of a nation. Without consumer demand, producers would lack one of the key motivations to produce: to sell to consumers. The consumer also forms part of the chain of distribution.
Recently in marketing instead of marketers generating broad demographic profiles and Fisio-graphic profiles of market segments, marketers have started to engage in personalised marketing, permission marketing, and mass customisation.
Largely due to the rise of the Internet, consumers are shifting more and more towards becoming prosumer, consumers who are also producers (often of information and media on the social web), influence the products created (e.g. by customisation, crowdfunding or publishing their preferences), actively participate in the production process, or use interactive products.
Law and politics
The law primarily uses a notion of the consumer in relation to consumer protection laws, and the definition of consumer is often restricted to living persons (i.e. not corporations or businesses) and excludes commercial users. A typical legal rationale for protecting the consumer is based on the notion of policing market failures and inefficiencies, such as inequalities of bargaining power between a consumer and a business. As all potential voters are also consumers, consumer protection has a clear political significance.
Concern over the interests of consumers has spawned consumer activism, where organized activists do research, education and advocacy to improve the offer of products and services. Consumer education has been incorporated into some school curricula. There are also various non-profit publications, such as Which?, Consumer Reports and Choice Magazine, dedicated to assist in consumer education and decision making.
In India, the Consumer Protection Act 1986 differentiates the consummation of a commodity or service for personal use or to earn a livelihood. Only consumers are protected per this act and any person, entity or organization purchasing a commodity for commercial reasons are exempted from any benefits of this act.
- Alpha consumer
- Consumer behaviour
- Consumer debt
- Consumer Direct
- Consumer electronics
- Consumer leverage ratio
- Consumer organization
- Consumer protection
- Consumer reporting agency
- Consumer choice
- Consumers' co-operative
- Grey pound
- Informed consumer
- Mental health consumer
- "Consumer - Define Consumer at Dictionary.com". Dictionary.com.
- Cross, Robert G. (1997). Revenue management: hard-core tactics for market domination. Broadway Books. pp. 66–71. ISBN 978-0-553-06734-7.
- Gunelius, Susan (3 July 2010). "The Shift from Consumers to PROsumers". Forbes. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
- Scammell, Margaret. "Citizen Consumers: towards a new marketing of politics?" (PDF). p. 6. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
- Prosumer Revisited. Retrieved 2 July 2016.
- Krohn, Lauren (1995). Consumer protection and the law: a dictionary. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-0-87436-749-2.
- "An Institutional Analysis of Consumer Law". Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law. Archived from the original on March 2, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-29.
- "Consumer vs Customer". Consumerdaddy.com. Archived from the original on 2010-04-06. Retrieved 2010-03-10.
The consumer protection act 1986 of India, is a little more generous with the word 'Consumer'. According to this law, consumer is not only a person who uses the product for domestic personal use, but also one who uses the product to earn his daily livelyhood.
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