購買服務或商品可能會帶來產品性能不令人滿意的風險，稱為感知風險。較高的感知風險通常會導致對信息搜索的依賴性更高，并使購買前的決策過程更加困難。 Groupon Promise可以減少消費者可能認為的風險，即使他們做出了錯誤的選擇，他們也總是可以得到回報。
而且，Groupon Promise可以幫助減少購買后的不和諧情緒，這是決定購買時的不確定性或焦慮感（Hawkins＆Mothersbaugh，1998），因為Groupon Promise在某些情況下會感到后悔時向客戶保證退貨政策。1、As Julie Mossler, the PR of the company illustrated that the company’s fast growth can be attributed partly to the company’ understanding of consumer behavior and pointed out that price was the activation point that people would subscribe with Groupon repeatedly using Groupon, in addition people are also concerned about working with quality merchant and having an experience that they cannot get elsewhere. Moreover, she explained that the rapid growing of Groupon is also as a result of the company’s ability to solve the problem to engage with local customers and turn it into real term sales.
2、The Groupon Promise is the promises that at any time Groupon disappoints its users or the merchant does not provide with what they say they will, the customers can get a refund without a question.
The buying of a service or a good may involve risk that the performance of the product is not satisfactory which is referred as perceived risk. Higher perceived risk will typically result in higher reliance of information search and make the decision process prior to purchase more difficult. The Groupon Promises can reduce the perceived risk as the consumers may consider even if they make a poor choice, they can always get a return.
Moreover, Groupon Promise can help to reduce post purchase dissonance which is the uncertainty or anxiety when deciding to make a purchase (Hawkins & Mothersbaugh,1998) because Groupon Promise guarantee the customer of return policy under certain circumstances when they feel regretted.
首先，問題識別是第一階段，可以定義為消費者所需狀態與感知到的實際狀態之間的差異，足以觸發決策過程（Hawkins＆Mothersbaugh，1998）。訂閱的電子郵件可能會激起Groupon用戶的電子郵件，該電子郵件通知用戶某些產品的今天最佳報價，每日交易和折扣代碼。他們也可能是由朋友通過Facebook或Twitter推薦而觸發的。 Groupon Now是一款智能手機應用程序，可以使消費者意識到附近的優惠活動，這也可能會觸發問題識別。
最后，最后一步是購買后評估。確認交易后，消費者可能會使用該提議而不使用該提議，使用提議的用戶可能會感到滿意或不滿意，而感到不滿意的消費者可能會采取諸如退貨，停止使用Groupon，參與交易等行動。如果他們的口碑不好，請向他們的朋友抱怨，或者他們可能不采取任何行動，但將來可能不太可能使用Groupon（Hawkins＆Mothersbaugh，1998）。3. The five-stage purchase decision process for a typical Groupon user would involve the following five stages:
First, problem recognition is the first stage which can be defined as the difference between a consumers desired state and perceived actual state which is adequate enough to trigger the decision process (Hawkins & Mothersbaugh,1998). The Groupon user may be aroused by the subscribed emails which inform the user today’s best offer, deal-of-the-day and discount codes of certain products. They may also be triggered by their friends’ referral through Facebook or twitter. Groupon Now is a smartphone app which can make the consumers aware of the great deals nearby which could also trigger problem recognition.
Secondly, information search is the next stage after a certain problem or opportunity is recognized that they may base on knowledge from their long-term memory to decide if the offer is valuable, this kind of information search is called internal search. Also, a consumer may use external search such as personal sources, market-based information to determine whether they should take the offer. For example, they may compare the coupons in Groupon with their competitors such as woot or Google’s offer to decide or they may discuss with their friends.
Thirdly, Alternative Evaluation consists of evaluative criteria, importance of criteria and alternatives considered. The evaluative criteria are several characteristics, dimensions or benefits the consumer expect for in response to a recognized problem such as the price of the offer, the quality of the merchant and the time restricts of the deal. The consumer than assign weight to each criterion and decide how Groupon’s deal perform compared with competitors like Woot. Price may be the top concern for most consumers.
Fourthly, the purchase decision would be made when the deal is acceptable by the consumer then he would enter the name and credit card online and will only be charged when the enough people join for the deal to be activated.
Finally, the last step is post purchase evaluation. After the deal is confirmed the consumer may use the offer on not use the offer, and those who use the offer may be satisfied or dissatisfied, and the consumers who are dissatisfied may take action such as get a return, stop using Groupon anymore, engage in negative Word of Mouth, complain to their friends, or they may take no action but may be less likely to use Groupon in the future (Hawkins & Mothersbaugh,1998).
Groupon的另一個挑戰是Groupon的增長率。 Groupon一直是增長最快的業務，并已擴展到歐洲和其他一些國家，但是，訂閱的大多數用戶仍然是美國用戶，并且大多數報價仍在美國銷售。建議Groupon不斷努力從國際角度了解消費者的購買行為。 Groupon還應嘗試與海外業務合作，并在美國以外提供更多交易。
4. The psychological influences would be perception, learning, memory, motives, personality, emotions and attitudes of a person (Hawkins & Mothersbaugh,1998). For example, a user may have the need for Stimulation and when is informed of a new activity by Groupon and may trigger impulsive purchasing. The sociological influences may be culture, subculture, demographics, social status, reference groups, family and marketing activities ((Hawkins & Mothersbaugh,1998). For example, when the economy is not well, people may have less household income to spend especially for unnecessary products, hence people are more likely to buy products or services which are at services hence they would use Groupon.
5. One challenge Groupon faces is that after the Groupon deal is confirmed the consumers would not use the deal. If the product is not use post purchase, consumers would show a less favorable attitudes towards the business and the merchant doesn’t make profits. Therefore, Groupon should send alert message to users who haven’t used their vouchers to use the voucher promptly.
The other challenge for Groupon is the growth rate of Groupon. Groupon has been the most fast-growing business and has expanded in to Europe and some other countries, however most of the users subscribed are still American users and most of the offers are still sold in US. It is recommended that Groupon should continually make effort to understand consumers’ purchasing behavior from an international perspective. Groupon should also make attempts to work with business overseas and provide more deals outside US.
Hawkins, D. I., Mothersbaugh, D. L (1998). Consumer Behavior: Building Marketing Strategy 10/e. McGraw-Hill.