2nd Edition

Essentials of Consumer Behavior An Applied Approach

By Debra L. Stephens Copyright 2023
    225 Pages 6 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    225 Pages 6 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This thoroughly updated second edition of Essentials of Consumer Behavior offers a concise alternative to traditional textbooks with a practice-based approach.

    Stephens emphasizes that consumer behavior does not simply equate to buyer behavior. She examines the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that shape consumers’ attitudes and motivations in relation to brands, products, and marketing messages. The new edition of this concise guide to the discipline offers comprehensive coverage of issues including:

    • Technology now integrated into all chapters
    • Consumer vulnerability, expanded beyond young consumers and persons with disabilities to include the economically disadvantaged and those marginalized because of ethnicity and gender
    • Consumers’ roles in the lives of nonhuman animals, with extensive discussion of the consumer journey toward acquiring an animal companion and the impact of pet ownership on consumers’ non-pet-related purchases

    Suitable for marketing and consumer behavior students at advanced undergraduate and postgraduate levels, this clearly written and thorough textbook will keep students engaged and help them to become savvier marketers. Online resources include links to videos and podcasts, further reading, questions, and exercises. Instructor supplements include PowerPoint slides and chapter quizzes.

    Part 1: Fundamental Concepts in Consumer Behavior

    1. Introduction to Consumer Behavior

    2. Consumer Research Methods

    3. Why We Buy

    4. The Consumer’s Journey

    Part 2: How Consumers Create Meaning

    5. Memory and Priming

    6. Sensory Perception in a Consumption Context

    7. Sociocultural and Interpersonal Influences on Consumer Behavior

    Part 3: Consumer Welfare

    8. Marginalized Consumers

    9. Children and Adolescents as Consumers

    10. Nonhuman Animals as Special Possessions

    Part 4: Shifts in Technology and Consumer Values

    11. The Rise of Collaborative Consumption and the Sharing Economy

    William Barnes and Greg Hill


    Debra L. Stephens is Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Portland, USA. She has published in leading journals, including the Journal of Consumer Research, the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, and the Journal of Business Ethics.

    "After years of preparation, pursuing a broadly interdisciplinary perspective, Stephens has created a carefully constructed and beautifully written treatise that covers the conventional decision-oriented information-processing approach to buyer choices and the traditional methods of data-driven research, but that also branches into such newer areas as ethnography and netnography, the impact of social media, and the special needs of vulnerable consumers – including the disabled, children, other marginalized groups, and even animals. Stephens provides plentiful real-world examples and an engaging style throughout, perhaps most of all when she delves into the world of pet ownership and tells tales of her own beloved Gounguroo." - Morris B. Holbrook, W. T. Dillard Professor Emeritus of Marketing, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University

    "One of the strengths of this textbook is the author’s use of vivid examples to clarify the nature of the concepts being introduced. Further, the examples do a good job of demonstrating the nature of their interface with society. This text provides an interesting and somewhat unique perspective of consumer behavior." - James W. Gentry, Emeritus Professor of Marketing, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

    "This consumer behavior book is a rare offering that goes beyond the stale structure that focuses on selling soap to include a more humanistic approach that recognizes the vagaries of everyday life. If you want your students to have a deeper understanding of our material environments, you should direct them to this wholistic understanding of the intersection of people and markets in a most profound way. Few, if any, other options provide a similar academic journey." - Ron Hill, Dean's Professor of Marketing and Public Policy, Kogod School of Business, Marketing Department Chair, Vice President of Publications, American Marketing Association

    "Debra Stephens has crafted an easy-to-read, comprehensive textbook on consumer behavior that brings key concepts to life through examples and cases. In particular, I appreciate the integration of vulnerability into the study of consumer behavior, as it facilitates a deeper understanding of the realities of today’s marketplace. Kudos to Debra for her outstanding work!" - Andrew S. Gallan, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University