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Volume 1, Issue 2 (February, 2014) Online ISSN-2347-7571

Published by: Sai Om Publications

Sai Om Journal of Commerce & Management
A Peer Reviewed International Journal


Reddy Praneeth Karnam1
Assistant Professor, Sreenivasa Institute of Technology and
Management Studies (SITAMS), Chittoor, A.P., India

Dr. N. Appa Rao2

Formerly Director IIIT & P, J.N.T.U.,
Kakinada, A.P., India

Dr. I. Lokananda Reddy3

Professor and Director, KKC Institute of P.G. Studies,
Puttur, A.P, India

Rural markets are virtually untapped compared to urban markets, thus marketers are turning towards
the vast potential available in the rural markets. Women consumers are playing a vital role in
purchase decisions and the current study makes an attempt to know rural consumer behavior of
women towards soaps.
Keywords: Consumer Behaviour; Bathing Soaps; Rural Market

Consumer behavior is an ever changing concept, which tends to change according to time, tastes and
fashions, income of consumers and so on. It is understood that there is always a gap in the study of
consumer behavior, particularly towards FMCG products.
Urban markets are almost saturated on account of aggressive marketing of firms and buying habits of
urban consumers , rural markets are possessing a huge potential yet untapped on account of many
reasons like less income among rural consumers, traditional living of them etc
Indian women are not confined to four walls today like how it happened to be before some time, they
are also occupying a similar role like men and thus are becoming influential person as a income earner
and consumer
Women are very much concerned with beauty and bathing soaps play a very significant role in
protection of skin and beauty
Taking all the above facts into consideration, a study is undertaken to know consumer behavior of
rural women towards bathing soaps in four villages of Irala mandal namely Irala, Polakala, YS Gate
and Agarampalle by taking a sample of 25 respondents from each village, thus a total sample of 100
respondents are covered under this study. Convenience sampling is used in choosing the respondents.

Available online on 35

Sai Om Journal of Commerce & Management
A Peer Reviewed International Journal
Avinash kapoor and Kulsresta studied about effect of perception on Indian urban female consumer
behavior and found that a significant positive relationship was found between media usage and fashion
Melnyk et al studied about gender differences in loyalty to firms and individual service providers and
found that females are more loyal than men in the object of loyalty as an individual and when the
object of loyalty is a group, then there was an opposite effect
Mary Lou Roberts studied about changing roles of women as a consumer and found that women have
multiple roles and also working women do not make up single homogeneous group
Sureshlal et al studied about spending patterns of rural women consumers on cosmetic products and
found that women consumers try to buy popular brand cosmetics in spite of less income
Madhwanand in his study stated that FMCG products are performing in a better way in rural markets
than in urban markets
Selvaraj in his study stated that many marketers are not still possessing in depth knowledge of
analyzing complex rural markets in india
Manjunatha in his study stated that urban markets are saturated, so marketers should give importance
to rural markets. The study also revealed that rural markets are growing at about five times than urban
1. To study the socio economic profiles of the respondents
2. To know factors influencing women consumer behavior in the purchase of bathing soaps and
to know their satisfaction levels
Primary data
Secondary data
1. What is your age group?
a. 18-25 b.25-40 c. above 40
For the above question, it is known that 19 respondents belonged to age group of 18-25 years, 67
respondents belonged to 25-40 years group and remaining 14 respondents belonged to above 40 years
2. What is your marital status
a. Married b.Un Married c.Seperated/ Divorced/Other
For the above question, 69 respondents answered that they are married, 27 respondents are un married
and 4 respondents belonged to separated / divorced or other category
3. What is your monthly income?
a. Below 10000 b. Between 10000 and 20000 c. More than 20000

VOL. 1, ISSUE 2 (February 2014) 36 Online ISSN 2347-7571

Sai Om Journal of Commerce & Management
A Peer Reviewed International Journal
For the above question, 51 respondents said that their monthly income is below 10000, 29 respondents
said that their income range is between 10000 and 20000, and remaining respondents said that their
monthly income is more than 20000
4. What soap brand are you currently using?
a.Cinthol b.Liril c.Lux d.Medimix e.Santoor f.Lifebuoy g.Dettol h.Hamam i.Mysore sandal j.No.1
k.Vivel l.Dove m.Other Brand
For the above question, 10 respondents said that they are currently using cinthol soap, 8 respondents
are using liril soap, 15 respondents are using lux soap, 14 respondents are using medimix soap, 13
respondents are using santoor soap, 10 respondents are using lifebuoy, 7 respondents are using dettol
soap. 9 respondents are using hamam soap, 5 respondents are using mysore sandal soap, 2 respondents
are using No 1 soap, 2 respondents are using vivel soap, 2 respondents are using dove soap and
remaining 3 respondents are using other brand soaps.
5. Which pack of soap do you generally prefer to purchase?
a. small b. big
For the above question, 71 respondents said that they prefer to purchase small soap packs, 29
respondents said that they prefer to purchase big pack soaps
6. What factor plays a significant role in your purchase decision of soap
a. Lathering effect b. Fragrance c. Packaging d. Shape of soap e. other factors
For the above question, 15 respondents said that lathering effect of their soap plays significant role in
their purchase decision of soap, 31 respondents said it to be fragrance of their soap, 40 respondents
said it to be packaging, and 11 respondents said it to be shape of soap and remaining 3 respondents
said other factors
7. What source plays important role in purchase of your soap brand?
a. T.V. Ads b. Friends and Relatives reference c. Family members consent d. Newspaper Ad e. Other
For the above question, 24 respondents said that TV Ads play an important role in their purchase, 10
respondents said it to be reference of friends and relatives, 26 respondents said it to be family members
consent, 20 respondents said it to be newspaper Ads and remaining 20 respondents said it to be other
8. Have you ever recommended the current soap brand to your friends/ Relatives
a. Yes B.No
For the above question, 54 respondents said that they have recommended their soap brand to their
friends and relatives, 46 respondents didn’t recommend
9. Is price of your soap brand a major concern for you
a. Yes b.No. c. Can’t say
For the above question, 78 respondents said that price is a major concern, 18 respondents said no for
that and 4 respondents couldn’t say any answer
10. Rate your current soap brand
a. Highly satisfactory b.Satisfactory c.Fair d.Dissatisfactory e. highly dissatisfactory
For the above question, 21 respondents said that they are highly satisfied with their current soap brand,
55 respondents are satisfactory, 20 respondents have fair opinion, 4 respondents are dissatisfied, and 3
respondents are highly dissatisfied

VOL. 1, ISSUE 2 (February 2014) 37 Online ISSN 2347-7571

Sai Om Journal of Commerce & Management
A Peer Reviewed International Journal
From the above study it is found that majority of the respondents purchase soaps based on the packing
that it has and many of them said that family members consent is the major factor in the purchase of
soaps. Finally it can be concluded that majority of respondents are satisfied with the current soap brand
that they are using.
1. Avinash Kapoor and Chinmay kulsresta , “The effect of perception on Indian urban female
consumer buying behavior”, Monash Business Review, Vol.4, Issue.1 Apr-2008 pp2-12
2. Valentyna Melnyk, Stijn Van Osselaer, Tammo Bijmolt , “Are women more loyal customers than
men ? Gender differences in loyalty to firms and individual service providers” Journal of
marketing, Amercian marketing Assoc., Vol.73, Jul-2009, pp 82-96
3. Mary Lou Roberts, “Women’s changing roles –A consumer behavior perspective”, Advances in
consumer research”, Vol.8, 1981 pp590-595
4. Dr.B.Suresh Lal , N.V.Sreeranga Prasad, G.Kavita “Spending pattern on cosmetic products in rural
areas: A case study” The Economic Challenger, No-10, Issue-38, Jan-Mar-2008 Ajmer
5. 5 Madhwanand , “Rural india getting up”, The economic challenger no.11,Issue 41 Oct-Dec-2008
p 26
6. Dr.A.Selvaraj, “Issues and Challenges in rural marketing” The Economic Challenger, No.10,
Issue.37, Oct-Dec-2007 pp.52-56
7. Manjunatha” Rural Marketing-Prospects” Indian Journal of Marketing, New Delhi, Vol.XXXIV,
No.6 Jun-2004,pp.24-25

VOL. 1, ISSUE 2 (February 2014) 38 Online ISSN 2347-7571