Pang, Hon-Wai / HWP
The extent of customer confusion within the mobile phones market due to a proliferation of mobile phone devices and services brought on by consumer empowerment.
[Dissertation (University of Nottingham only)]
As mobile phones become more involved in the day-to-day lives of individuals in British society, has indeed brought about a high level of fragmentation and competition along with consumer empowerment, thus leading to a high proliferation of mobile phone devices and services made available. As a result of this, there is a cause of concern for consumers within the UK mobile phones market as they seek to find the right deal for them whilst battling the many choices and offers available, the wide range of information made available, and the way in which they will filter and make their final choice.
This then brought about a need to undertake an exploratory research into the UK mobile phones market in order to determine the extent of customer confusion especially within a market which is always experiencing changes due to innovation and technology, and to then try and make some comparison between the differences and similarities between the past as well as foreign mobile phone markets such as Thailand, other relevant sources used.
After the appropriate literatures were gathered, qualitative research was undertaken through the use of an ‘Interview Questionnaire Guide’ which was deployed in an interview setting with a small sample of ten individuals in order to try and identify the extent of customer confusion within the UK mobile phones market.
As a result of the interviews, the findings have suggested that customer confusion does exist within the mobile phones market due to a high number of mobile phones and service plans available, and there are various factors which can cause confusion such as similarities of mobile phone features, salesmen, experience, and whether you would actually know what you are looking for.
The findings have also brought out many suggestions by the interviewees on how to tackle and reduce the potential of confusion when presented with many choices and offers, information search, and making the final choice. The research has also found that the internet has played such an important part when helping to reduce consumer confusion especially when it can allow consumers to undertake research by reading reviews, watching mobile phone videos, and cross-comparisons.
As consumer confusion exists, mobile phone manufacturers cannot seem to do anything but to try and make themselves appear as the superior brand especially within a highly fragmented and competitive market which presents a high rate of return in terms of profits. Thanks to the internet, consumers are finding it more and more easier to undertake research and to find a mobile phone handset/plan which is suitable for him/her, but whether this applies to other societies and other classes of society remains to be seen, thus creating a pathway for future research.
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