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CHAPTER VII

FINDINGS, RECOMMENDATIONS AND CONCLUSION


7.1 Findings of the Study
In the present study the researcher has collected data from 12 manufacturers
of kitchen appliances, 50 dealers of kitchen appliances and 600 consumers of kitchen
appliances. The data and information collected are presented in tabular form and
analyzed under four objectives. Census method is used to select the manufacturers of
Kitchen Appliances marketed in Kerala. There are twelve manufacturers who have
prominent market share in the kitchen appliances segment of Kerala, and all of them
were taken for the study. Multistage sampling technique was adopted for choosing
the sample of distributors and consumers for the study. The same procedure is
adopted for selecting the samples of Distributors and Consumers. Mathematical
tools like chi square test, arithmetic mean, percentage etc are used for the analysis of
data. The analysis reveals some important inferences relating to marketing of kitchen
appliances in Kerala. The following paragraphs reiterate and summarize the findings
of the data analysis that has already been presented in the preceding chapters.

7.2. Marketing Strategies of Manufacturers of Kitchen Appliances


One of the main objectives of the study is to analyze marketing mix strategies
adopted by the manufacturers in kitchen appliances market segment of Kerala. When
the data relating to this aspect of the study were analyzed, it was found that;
1. All the twelve manufacturers selected for the study has their business operations
at the national level. Since they operate at the national level, the marketing
strategy might be more dynamic than those who operate at a regional level.
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2. From the analysis it is revealed that a sizable number of the manufacturers of


Kitchen appliances do not confine their manufacturing activities to a particular
product alone, but they maintain a good product portfolio. But the manufacturers
of refrigerators focus on the production of refrigerator alone without making any
diversification to other selected product segments of kitchen appliances industry.
3. Like any other consumer product, the manufacturers of kitchen appliances also
prefer to recover the cost in full from the prices of their products in order to
survive and grow in the market. Even on such occasions they cannot negate the
supply demand conditions in the market.
4. Marketing department of the firms in kitchen appliances industry has a prominent
role in the determination of the product prices. This might be due to the fact that
the marketing department is the main source of market intelligence to the firm
about the demand conditions, competitor prices, consumer needs etc.
5. All the manufacturers selected for the study give due consideration to the past
prices of their products and the demand conditions in the market before finalizing
their pricing decision. They also take into account the competitor price and assess
the possible competitor reactions to their price moves. They also make societal
considerations and also analyze the impact of economic conditions in the market
on the prices of their product.
6. Cost plus pricing is the most widely applied method of pricing by the
manufacturers of kitchen appliances. Two third of the manufacturers followed
this method for determining the price of their products. Only those manufacturers
like Inalsa who concentrate on a specific segment of the market follow the going
rate pricing method.

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7. With regard to the price adaptation strategies of manufacturers in kitchen


appliances industry, frequency of order is the most influencing factor for them.
Geographical Demand and Purchase timing are also seriously looked in to before
making a decision finally in this regard. Manufacturers are least bothered about
market segment requirement and service contract in the formulation of their price
adaptation strategies.
8. The analysis shows that all the manufactures practice discriminatory pricing. 50
percent of them adopt it in the form of customer segment pricing and 25 percent
each follow it as location pricing and time pricing. None of the manufacturers
under study adopt product form pricing and image pricing.
9. Most of the manufacturers (58.34 percent) resort to Product line pricing, 25
percent adopts Product bundling pricing and 16.66 percent follows Optional
feature pricing, while they design their product mix pricing.
10. In Kerala, during Onam and Ramzan festivals, all the manufacturers selected for
the study follow the practice of price offers to their customers. One half of the
manufacturers resort to the practice of price cut due to the declining market share
and the other half do this practice in order to dominate the market. During
recession days one fourth of them went for a price cut.
11. All the manufacturers selected for the study offer incentives to customers in the
form of cash discounts, seasonal discount and promotional allowances. But none
of them allows any quantity discounts or trade in allowances to their customers
even if they either individually or in group made bulk purchases of their
products.

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12. Manufacturers in kitchen appliances industry follow universal techniques


uniformly in their promotion pricing strategies. They usually adopt promotional
pricing techniques like special event pricing, cash rebates, extended warranties
and service contracts to stimulate early purchase. But none of them followed loss
leader pricing, low interest financing or longer payment terms for the promotion
of their sales. Here it is important to note that all the manufacturers under study
follow the universal techniques uniformly in Promotional Pricing.
13. Majority of the manufacturers in kitchen appliances industry are using 2 level
channels for marketing their products. Some of the manufacturers depend on 3
level channels and none of them use 1 level channel in their distribution
activities.
14. Most of the manufacturers in kitchen appliances mainly depend on
advertisements or entrust agencies for the selection of channel partners because
they are considered to be the most cost effective method by them.
15. All the twelve manufacturers selected for the study impart internal training to the
channel members. This is due to the fact that the dealers become aware of the
technical aspects and unique features associated with their products, which help
them a lot to explain its merits and utilities compared to the competitors
products.
16. A multi dimensional approach is to be followed by the manufacturing firms for
the evaluation of the performance of channel members. This is because a channel
member good in one area may be poor at other area and evaluation of both sides
shall give information on their overall performance efficiency.

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17. Manufacturers of kitchen appliances preferred to solve their channel conflict at


the initial stage itself through mediations and diplomatic actions rather than
taking it in to arbitration for settlement by considering its adverse effect on them
and the channel member.
18. Many of the manufacturers prefer specialty stores to other distribution centers for
promoting their products. This is because kitchen appliances are utility products
meant for specific use and have some complimentary/supplementary relationship
among them, the promotion of which requires a specific centre for it.
19. All the twelve manufacturers prefer to adopt Franchising and Corporate chain
stores as a system of retailing for kitchen appliances. None of the manufacturers
under study uses direct marketing, automatic vending, and store less retailer or
voluntary chain as their type of retailing system.
20. In the competitive environment of the business, in order to grow and withstand
the competition like any other firms, kitchen appliances manufacturers also prefer
to have a flexible distribution system where the dealers are allowed full freedom
to take decisions on many aspects of marketing their products. Hence all the
manufacturers allow the retailers to take marketing decisions in different areas
like target marketing, product assortment and procurement, service and store
atmosphere, price and promotion decision.
21. All of the manufacturers, who have been using 3 level channel allow their
wholesalers to perform their normal functions such as buying and assorting, bulk
breaking, warehousing, Transportation, Financing, Risk bearing, Market
information and Management services which are helpful in the promotion of
sales including transporting and warehousing. Moreover, they are also allowed to

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take decisions related to target market, product assortment and service, price and
promotion decision to face the challenges of new channel needs.
22. The analysis shows that the entire manufacturers under study finally dispatch
augmented product with added features like warranty, after sales service, free
delivery, credit facility and installation of the appliance at the premises of the
customer. The manufacturers offer free installation as the kitchen appliances are
of a special category which requires expert handling and operation and the house
maids who use the equipments do not possess the required skill or technical know
how to operate the appliance. Moreover, the manufacturer has to keep the sold
products in its original form and use at least up to a particular period of time for
which he has to extend warranty and after sales service.
23. The kitchen appliances produced by most of the manufacturers under study have
the entire dimensions (width and length) of the product mix. Only refrigerator
manufacturers are lagging behind in width and length dimensions of the product
mix.
24. The entire manufacturers selected for the study constantly resort to
modernization of their product lines. The imperfect form of competition exists in
the kitchen appliances industry, withstanding of which is possible by the firms
mostly through product differentiation. Hence they try to incorporate all novel
features in their products powered by modern technology in accordance with the
changes in their competitive products.
25. The analysis shows that all the manufacturers adopt product featuring as a regular
policy. So, every product segment in kitchen appliance industry under study has a
good range of products in price and its feature terms which are mainly used by

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the firms as a tool for expanding their market share either by attracting the
customers from different geographic segment or by stimulating the existing ones
to shift their demands from economy segment to premium segments.
26. Multi brand strategy is the most widely used brand strategy in kitchen appliances
industry. About 42 percent of the manufacturers surveyed use this strategy.
Umbrella brand and family of names are also favoured by twenty five percent
each of the manufacturers. Single brand strategy is relatively unpopular among
the manufacturers. Many of the manufacturers would like to have a brand equity
which the customers value and see it as a friend. One third of the manufacturers
wish to measure its brand value at the firm level.
27. With regard to the packaging aspects of marketing, utmost concern given by the
manufacturers of kitchen appliances is the storage, use and convenience of the
product. This factor gained the first priority by the manufacturers followed by
protection of the product and promotion of the product. Its packaging is nothing
to do with the promotion of the product as the people are attracted not by the
packing of the product, but by the quality of the product contained in it.
28. To reap the maximum benefit out of the implementation of marketing program,
all the prominent ingredients of marketing communication mix are applied
simultaneously by all the manufacturers under study. However, personal selling
and direct marketing not found as part of the promotion mix.
29. Among the manufacturers of kitchen appliances under study, 58.33 percent spent
moderate amount and 41.67 percent spent huge amount for advertisement of their
products. None of the manufacturers reported that their advertisement budget is
low. Competitive situations prevailing in kitchen appliances industry like any

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other segment of home appliances market compel the companies to spend more
for advertisement in order to make the customers aware of the relevant aspects of
their products compared to that of competitors there by pursuing them to buy
their products.
30. All the manufacturers consider almost all the factors in setting advertisement
budget except stage in the product life cycle. This is because all the
manufacturers under study are already in the market with established brands and
most of them have been in Kerala market for the last 10 to 15 years. They have
been in growing or saturation stage and advertisement is a regular promotional
activity for them.
31. Choosing media type is the most important factor considered in the selection of
advertising media. Geographical media allocation, Selecting specific media
vehicles, desired reach number of audience and impact and then media timing are
the other determining factors of media selection in the order of their preference
by the manufacturers.
32. It is also found that Events are the most important tool of marketing public
relations by the manufacturer.
33. All the manufacturers selected for the study have adopted a holistic approach in
their market segmentation process. They have taken into consideration all the
variables relevant for segmenting the market together and they have designed
their products which can fulfill the needs of the consumers irrespective of the
environment in which they include.

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34. All the manufacturers selected for the study, follow Diffused preferences as
patterns of market segmentation because the consumer preferences are scattered
and the consumers vary greatly in their preferences.
35. Segment structural attractiveness is the most important factor in the evaluation of
market segment by the manufacturers. A segment in a kitchen appliances market
might have desirable size and growth still not be attractive from a profitability
point of view. So the manufacturers in this industry appraise the impact on long
run profitability of the industry in terms of competitors, potential entrants,
substitute producers, buyers and suppliers.
36. With regard to the Product Positioning Strategies of Manufacturers of Kitchen
appliances, adding additional benefits and utilities to their products is the main
strategy pursued by them for marketing public relations and making an image or
identity of their products in the minds of consumers.
37. Among the various factors influencing the buying behavior of their consumers,
the manufacturers of kitchen appliances believe that the personal factors are the
most prominent ones. Occupation and economic circumstances of the buyer is the
major personal factor affecting the buying behavior of consumers of kitchen
appliances.
38. Social factor is also a significant factor influencing the buying behavior of the
consumer. It is also found that family is the most significant social factor
influencing the buying behavior of consumers in kitchen appliances industry.
Other important social factors include reference group and role and status of the
consumers.

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39. It is traced out from the analysis that perception of the consumer towards various
brands products is the most significant psychological factor influencing the
buying behavior of consumers. Beliefs and attitudes of persons are also highly
influential psychological factors in buying behavior.
40. Most of the manufacturers surveyed are keen in monitoring the post purchase
behavior of their consumers. This practice they follow on the basis of the
principle that retaining customer base is more important than attracting new ones
in the present competitive scenario. Most of them use the tools like complaint
and suggestion systems, customer satisfaction surveys, lost customer analysis etc.
for tracking and measuring customer satisfaction. Among these complaints and
suggestion system is the most widely used by manufacturers of kitchen
appliances for measuring the post purchase satisfaction of their buyers.
41. Reactive marketing proved to be the most preferred one among the manufacturers
of kitchen appliances in Kerala. This level of investment in customer building is
ranked first by manufacturers survey followed by pro-active marketing and base
marketing. Re active marketing is by far an easier approach and brings economy
in money, effort and time. This could be the reason why manufacturers of kitchen
appliances prefer this.
42. All the manufacturers of kitchen appliances under study have a competitive
intelligence system to get valid information about competitors. During the
present competitive situation of kitchen appliances market of Kerala, each and
every manufacturer has to get information about the competitor product, the
strategy of competitors and he has to design counter strategy against them and
have to modify their products in accordance with the changes in the industry.

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43. Many of the manufacturers in kitchen appliances industry want to become market
challengers by making a product advantage, offering better value to the market
place and by adopting new technology in production for getting more economy in
their production activities. Only one fourth of the manufacturers under study
prefer to become market leaders.
7.3 Distributor Strategies in the Kitchen Appliances Market of Kerala
The second important objective of this study is to identify the nature of
strategies adopted by the dealers/distributors in the kitchen appliances market of
Kerala for knowing whether there is any marketwise or product wise difference
among them in this regard. From the analysis of the data collected from the dealers
selected for the study, the following factors have been observed.
1. Majority of the distributors surveyed in the study have been transacting business in
the entire kitchen appliance which might be due to the uniform rate of pay offs
from their business regardless of the type of product they deal with.
2. There is difference in distribution of kitchen appliances by dealers among various
markets in Kerala. Relatively high priced products such as, Refrigerator and
Grinder were not sold by some dealers in various markets. When 50 percent of the
distributors from rural area do not deal in Refrigerator, only 25 percent of the
dealers in semi urban market do not transact their business in that product. This
might be due to the fact that there is not much market for Refrigerator in rural
area, and whenever the customers from rural area are in need of such products,
they prefer to purchase it from the nearest town, that is urban or semi urban area.
However, Chi-square analysis found no significant difference in the portfolio of

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kitchen appliances among the dealers from various geographic market segments of
Kerala.
3. Discrimination in the matter of selection of brand of different products among the
dealers is relatively low. All the distributors of mixer grinder deal in the most
popular brand of mixer grinders Sumeet. 80 percent of them deal also in all
other established brand of mixer grinders.
In the case of Grinder, Laxmi and Maharaja are the brands in which all the
selected dealers do business. Only 50 percent of the dealers in Grinder deal in
Butterfly brand of grinder.
Most of the famous brands of Refrigerators are sold by all the selected dealers
in Refrigerator. The most popular brand in India - Butterfly is the major component
of product portfolio of dealers in Gas Stove. Other reputed brands like Pigeon,
Inalsa, and Bajaj are also selling by majority of the dealers of that product.
Prestige and Hawkins are the most common brand for the dealers of Pressure
Cooker. Other popular brands like Pigeon and Butterfly are also chosen by majority
of the dealers for transacting their business.
4. Irrespective of the location, distributors are there in every segment of the market
for all the branded mixer grinders. This is because when a dealer deals in a mixer
grinder which has a brand image in the market; it promotes his face value and
credibility also in the market.
The most established brand of Grinder, that is Laxmi and Maharaja, have
found place in the product portfolio of all selected dealers in grinder across the
different market segments. 70 percent of semi urban and 60 percent of rural dealers
are dealing in all the established brands of grinders. Brands like Butterfly and Inalsa

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were not selected by some dealers for transacting their business which might be due
to lesser market demand for these products or inefficiency of its manufacturers to
design fruitful strategies in widening the distribution network and customer base.
The entire selected distributors deal in well established brands of
refrigerators which have already created a very strong brand image in the minds of
the consumer. Area wise distribution of dealers of Refrigerator on the basis of the
brands they are dealing with is almost same. It can also be identified that only 25
percent of distributors deal in BPL brand of Refrigerator, due to which the
manufacturer of this brand have decided to stop its production and the company is
itself on the verge of winding up.
When 75 percent dealers in semi urban market are keeping all the established
brands of gas stove in the market, 50 percent is the proportion of dealers who belong
to this group in all other two segments that is urban and rural. 80 percent of total
dealers are taking the inventory of either Pigeon or Inalsa or Bajaj along with the
most versatile brand, Butterfly.
50 percent dealers in urban area are doing in Pigeon brand along with the
most popular brands like Prestige and Hawkins, 50 percent of semi urban dealers
prefer Butterfly in lieu of Pigeon. All the rural dealers are keeping the entire
established brands of pressure cookers.
Inferential analysis shows that the geographic differences in the brand mix of
kitchen appliances by dealers are significant in the mixer grinder segment only. In all
other cases the differences among the dealers in this regard are not amenable to make
generalizations.

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5. Dealers in kitchen appliances find their business more profitable with refrigerators
due to the increasing demand for it and its higher profit contribution on account of
its higher price. With regard to the determinant of sales of kitchen appliances, its
sales are mainly influenced by utility and need that its customer perceived from it.
Again, utility of kitchen appliance is closely related to change in life style and
standard of living of the people.
6. It has to know that the dealers in urban and semi urban market are selling more
number of mixer grinders in their area of operation. All the selected dealers from
urban market are able to sell more than 30 units of mixer grinder per month. 75
percent of dealers in semi urban market also procured sales of mixer grinder in
that scale. Sales of mixer grinder by dealers of rural market are comparatively
lesser than those of other two segments. Only 50 percent of rural dealers are able
to make the sale of a mixer grinder per day on an average basis. Such discrepancy
in the distribution of sales across the region might be due to the difference in
attitude, socio economic profile and lifestyle of people residing there.
Irrespective of the geographical location in which the dealer confined their
operations, the sales frequency of grinder is very low. All the dealers in urban and
rural market and 50 percent of dealers in semi urban market are able to sell less than
10 units of grinder in a month on an average. Remaining 50 percent of dealers in
semi urban market are making a better sale of 20 to 30 units of grinder per month.
All the dealers of refrigerators from different market segments are making
better sales of refrigerator than other kitchen appliances like grinder. 50 percent of
dealers in urban market are able to sell refrigerator at a scale of at least one per day.
Cent per cent of rural dealers, two third of semi urban dealers and 25 percent of

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urban dealers in refrigerator could make 20 to 30 units of their products per month.
Such a distribution in sales of dealers reveals that every dealer of their category has
customers for their product in every market.
Each and every dealer in urban market is able to sell more than 30 units of
Gas Stove every month. Two third of the dealers in semi urban and 50 percent of the
dealers in rural market are in a position to make a monthly sale of more than 30 units
of Gas Stove. All the other dealers from these two market segments are in a good
sales position of 10 to 20 units per month. So the popularity and usage of cooking
gas in the remote areas of the country and government initiatives in this regard help
the dealers in gas stove to improve their performance.
Sales performance of dealers in pressure cooker are almost same in both
urban and semi urban market. 50 percent of dealers in both markets are making a sale
of more than 30 units of Pressure Cooker in a month and the sale of remaining 50
percent constituted 20 to 30 units a month. In rural market the sales frequency of all
the dealers of this appliance are 20 to 30 units. Saving cost of energy and possibility
of instant cooking demanded by modern lifestyle of the people helped the dealers
even in rural market to make better sales for this appliance nicknamed as kitchen
mate of maids.
From the inferential analysis it is clear that the dealers location of business
has statistically significant influence on their sales of mixer grinder and gas stove
only.
7. Sumeet and Maharaja are the market leaders in mixer grinder in all the market
segments according to the opinion of its dealers and the main competition in
mixer grinder market is between these two brands. They lead the other firms in

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price changes, new product introductions, distribution coverage and promotional


intensity.
Dealers in leading brands of mixer grinder have almost equal number of
distribution centers in urban and semi urban area. Being the more civilized group,
customers in developed region prefer to buy only branded products, which could be
the reason for dealers of such brand to concentrate more in urban and semi urban
market. Rural people comparatively their socio economic profile far behind the urban
group, give more thrust to price rather than quality and brand image which might
motivate them to divert to a less popular brand. Hence the dealers of such brands
start their own retail outlets in those regions. However, inferential statistical test,
failed to give any statistical validity for this argument.
8. Analysis of opinions of the dealers in grinder indicates that Laxmi is the leading
brand among the popular brands of grinders in Kerala. 50 percent of dealers in all
the three market segments have the belief that Laxmi is the leading brand in their
domain. Butterfly is the leading brand according to the remaining 50 percent
dealers in rural market - 30 percent dealers in urban and 25 percent dealers in semi
urban segments of Kerala. Very few dealers stand in favor of Maharaja and Inalsa
as market leader in urban and semi urban segments.
Here also such inferential statistical test failed to prove the significance of
difference across the markets.
9. Godrej, the versatile brand of refrigerator which occupies the premier position in
terms of market share of refrigerator in the past, still continue to keep that
position by successfully withstanding the competition from the new comers
according to the opinion of dealers surveyed. BPL, one of the favorable brands

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for a consumer in Kerala once, has almost lost its market demand now. It can
also be found that the dealers in refrigerator are showing much consensus with
regard to the query on market leader regardless of the market in which they are
operating their business and the Chi square test also substantiate the validity of
this finding.
10. It is clear from the responses of dealers that, Butterfly is the most prominent
brand among the consumers of gas stove in Kerala. More than 60 percent dealers
in urban and semi urban segments and 50 percent of dealers in rural segment of
the gas stove mentioned that butterfly surpassed all other brands of gas stove in
market share as well as popularity. 50 percent of dealers from rural segment
strongly argue that Pigeon is the most popular brand there. In terms of the
dealers perception on other brands, the analysis has not found much
dissimilarity across markets. This finding is again justified by the inferential
statistical tests as it rejects the hypothesis of significant difference in terms
market leadership that exists among the selected brands of Gas stove in different
parts of Kerala.
11. Among the four leading brands of pressure cooker marketing in Kerala, Prestige
occupies the prominent position in terms of market share and popularity as per
the opinion of dealers in this segment. Marketwise analysis of dealer response
observes some difference across urban, semi urban and rural segment. When
Prestige is the most versatile brand of pressure cooker in urban and semi urban
segment, Pigeon occupies that position in rural market conditions of Kerala. But
the Chi square test administered in this part of study fail to provide any statistical

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validity which is sufficient to generalize this finding in the context of the entire
market segment of Kerala.
12. Analysis reveals that Sumeet is the leading brand among the mixer grinders in
providing incentives to their dealers for encouraging them to maximize their
sales. Of the 50 dealers in mixer grinder 60 percent opined that they receive
special offers in the form of incentives from the manufacturers of Sumeet in
promoting that product. Other brands like Maharaja, Inalsa and Preethy are also
offering incentives to dealers based on their performance, but the numbers of
dealers who are getting such incentives are small.
13. In the case of the Grinder, the most popular Brand Laxmi is also motivating the
dealers for promotion of their product. 50 percent of the dealers of grinder
selected for the study replied that they receive attractive offers from the
manufacturers of Laxmi in popularizing and retaining the product in the mind of
the customers of that segment. After Laxmi, Maharaja occupies the second
position in motivating the dealer and the other two brands, Inalsa and Butterfly;
their sales promotion tools are relatively weak in terms of dealer motivation.
14. Almost all brands except BPL in refrigerator segment are pursuing the dealers to
carry the brand and to take greater effort for large sales. More than 20 percent of
dealers in all the four most popular brands in the refrigerator industry are giving
incentives to their dealers for recognizing their best sales performance. B P L,
which is considered a thrown out brand from the refrigerator industry, is not
taking any effort in reviving their demand through dealer motivation.
15. Butterfly, the most versatile brand among the group of gas stoves, is using a
strategy to push the dealers to provide a space for the product in their shelf and to

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put effort for its marketing. 50 percent of the dealers in Gas Stoves comment that
they are getting special offers or incentives from butterfly to become keen in
marketing that product. Pigeon, the brand which is in second position in terms of
customer sales are also keeping the same position in terms of pursuing its dealers
to take effort for creating demand for it.
16. Prestige, the kitchen mate of housewives, is keeping the prime position in
pushing its dealers to take more effort for its promotion. 50 percent of the dealers
in Pressure Cooker report that Prestige brand has been designing special trade
promotion schemes to stimulate the dealers to promote the brand. Other popular
brands of pressure cooker, Hawkins and Pigeon are also prudent in their trade
promotion action. But Butterfly, which is keener in trade promotion of its Gas
Stove, is least conscious in the importance of dealer motivation in marketing of
Pressure Cooker.
17. On considering the market leadership of brands in kitchen appliances it can be
interpreted that the establishment of a brand in the market could be the outcome
of its dealer motivation.
18. 30 dealers in sumeet brand of mixer grinder are getting offers from its
manufacturers and they are equally distributed in all the three geographical
areas. When Maharaja induce the dealers from both urban and semi urban areas,
other brands, Inalsa and Preethy offer incentives to dealers only from urban and
semi urban markets respectively.
The most selling brands of grinders in Kerala market, that is, Laxmi and
Maharaja are designing their own trade promotion strategies regardless of the market
segment where they operate. They are pushing the resellers of their products through

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attractive incentive/allowance schemes for maintaining/expanding their market share.


But other two brands, Inalsa and Butterfly extend dealer support only in those market
segments where they are mainly focused.
Trade promotional tools in the form of incentives or allowances to dealers in
established brands of refrigerator are almost uniformly distributed. Severe
competition in the refrigerator industry makes it a volume drives market. Its leading
players are forced to go for price reduction and they are in urgent need of more
volume of sales from different market segments for sustaining in the industry. So
these manufacturers are offering incentives to dealers for improving their selling
efficiency. BPL, the sick brand in refrigerator segment is the only exception to this
among the group.
Almost all selected brands of gas stove (except Inalsa) are offering special
incentive schemes to its dealers for stimulating them to bring out maximum
performance from them. When Butterfly is extending dealer incentive scheme
uniformly in all the three market segments, Inalsa and Bajaj are giving priority to
semi urban and urban segment in this regard. Pigeon, the brand which occupies
second position in terms of both market penetration and dealer motivation giving
more thrust to semi urban market. However this brand is not neglecting the
importance of motivation to dealers in its urban and rural segment also.
All the selected brands in this product segment offers incentives or
allowances to their dealers based on their performance in order to encourage them to
canvass new orders from different market segments. Almost all of these brands have
dealers in different part of their market regardless of the degree of urbanization and
the manufacturers are designing suitable trade promotion strategies for inducing the

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dealers to carry, promote and push the product in the market which they are
specialized.
Inferential analysis carried out here rejects the hypothesis that there is
significant market wise differences among dealers in getting incentives schemes
from the manufacturers of kitchen appliances in promotion of their products.
19. There is difference in strategies used by dealers in different Kitchen appliances
for increasing their volume of sales. When majority of the dealers in mixer
grinder (80 percent), in refrigerator (62.5 percent) and pressure cooker (50
percent) depends on manufacturers strategy for placing the product in the hands
of ultimate consumers, 60 percent of the dealers in gas stove use their own
advertisement as the main strategy for the promotion of the product in their deal.
But in the case of dealers in grinder they are taking more effort for pushing the
customer to buy the product from them through attractive consumer offers such
as free gift, payment by installment, cash reduction etc. 45 percent of such
dealers pursue this strategy.
20. Cash reduction is the most common form of incentive offered by the dealers in
all the five kitchen appliances for attracting new customers. 50 percent each of
the dealers in mixer grinder, refrigerator and pressure cooker opined that they are
giving cash reduction to the customers for their fresh purchase. More than 60
percent of the dealers in grinder and gas stove also comment so. Interest free loan
and exchange offer are also equally popular incentives offered by some of the
dealers in kitchen appliances for increasing their sales. Free gifts are practiced by
a very few number of dealers in relatively low priced kitchen appliances like
grinder, gas stove and pressure cooker.

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21. Cash reduction is the most common form of incentive offered by the dealers for
increasing their sale of mixer grinder in the entire market area. 50 percent each of
the dealers in mixer grinder from the three market segments are offering this
incentive to new customers for their purchase. Remaining 50 percent of dealers
in rural segment, by considering the relatively low income profile of the rural
people, offer their customers to make payment of the price of the mixer grinder
in installments. But in semi urban area, 25 percent of the dealers offer installment
payment system and remaining 25 percent give exchange of old goods with
new. On realizing the lifestyle of the urban people, 50 percent of the dealers
from urban area use this promotional technique by offering the new pressure
cooker in exchange for the old ones.
22. In the case of Grinder also cash reduction is the prominent strategy adopted by its
dealers across different market segments in pursuing their customers to buy the
new product. In addition to this, exchange offers are also made by the dealers to
influence the existing users of grinder for replacing their old ones. Interest free
loan or payment of price in installments is also applied by some selected dealers
from urban and semi urban market to attract the customers who are running at
their budget. Very few dealers in rural market are also announcing free gifts to
the new buyers of grinder.
Chi-square analysis administered here found that there is market wise difference
in dealers of grinder in designing their sales promotional strategies.
23. Cash reduction and interest free loans are the major strategies pursued by the
dealers of refrigerator for influencing the customer behavior irrespective of the
market where they were operating. Even though, exchange offer also was made

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by a small fraction of dealers from urban and semi urban market, it could not be
considered as a normal one in the case of refrigerator as the percentage of
exchange price offered by the dealer in terms of the price for the new product is
marginal only. None of the dealers in refrigerator was making any free gift offer
to the customers for influencing their buyer behavior and choosing him as the
dealer for their purchase.
24. Cash reduction and exchange offer were the popular marketing strategies among
the dealers in gas stove from all the three market segments. One important point
to be noted here is that, in relatively lower income profile segment, that is rural
segment, none of the dealers are offering any credit facility to attract the
customers. More or less the same thing is repeated in the case of pressure cooker
also. This could be attributed to two reasons. One is, both are relatively lower
priced items in the kitchen appliance industry and second is that their utility in
kitchen is closely related. However, unlike the dealers in gas stove, the urban
dealers in pressure cooker do not offered any free gift, but the semi urban ones
give such offer to the customers for choosing them as their supplier.
25. Sumeet is the most popular brand in mixer grinder segment of Kerala market. 46
percent of the dealers stand in favor of sumeet as the leading brand followed by
32 percent for Maharaja, 14 percent for Preethy and 8 percent for Inalsa.
In the case of grinder, Laxmi comes out as the dominating brand in the Kerala
market. 50 percent of the dealers in that product market are in favor of this
opinion. Out of the remaining 50 percent, 20 percent each believed Maharaja
and Butterfly are the leading brands and only 10 percent comment that relatively
non popular brand, Inalsa as the leading one.

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According to the opinion of dealers in refrigerator, the traditional brand Godrej


still keeps its first position in the refrigerator industry. 45 percent of dealers
support this statement. LG is in the second position in dealer survey with 20
percent and Whirlpool and Samsung, the close rival of LG from its homeland,
are in third position with 15 percent each. The thrown out brand, BPL has gained
only 5 percent of the dealer response.
Butterfly emerges as the leading brand in gas stove industry of Kerala. 70
percent of the dealers in butterfly hold this view. Other three selected brands
have only marginal share in the gas stove market.
Prestige occupies the prime position in terms of market leadership in the
pressure cooker segment in Kerala. One half of the dealers response is in favor
of this statement. Other three selected brands Hawkins, Butterfly and Pigeon
have almost equal market share in the industry according to the dealer response
observed in this regard.
26. According to the opinion of dealers in mixer grinder surveyed for the study,
sumeet brand of mixer grinder occupies the prime position in terms of its
popularity and market leadership among the consumers of Kerala regardless of
the market segment where it is sold. When 50 percent each of the dealers in
urban and rural segment commented that the popularity of sumeet brand is high,
40 percent of semi urban dealers hold the same view. 25 percent dealers from
urban, 35 percent from semi urban and 40 percent dealers from rural segment
view Maharaja is the most popular brand in their segments. Dealers opinion
about the popularity of other two brands Inalsa and Preethy is found to be
relatively scanty.

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Many of the dealers from different market segments stand in favor Laxmi as
the market leader in the grinder market of Kerala. One half of the dealers from urban
segment, two third of the dealers from semi urban segment and 70 percent of the
dealers from rural area view Laxmi as the most popular brand. When relatively large
fraction of the remaining dealers from urban and semi urban segment have the
opinion that Maharaja is the most popular brand, Butterfly is the leading brand for
the rest of the dealers from rural segment.
There is more favorable disposition by the dealers in refrigerator towards the
well known brand, Godrej as the market leader in all the three geographic segments
under study. More degree of convergence in this regard is shown between urban and
rural dealers where 45 percent each from these segments favor Godrej and 20 or
more percent support the multinational giant, LG as the market Leader. When 40
percent of the semi urban dealers standd in favor of LG, the relatively larger fractions
from the rest (30 percent) are of the view of Whirlpool, rather LG, as market Leader.
Other brands Samsung and BPL, relatively unpopular in all the three segments
Butterfly brand of Gas Stove is able to keep its position far ahead of its
competitors in the industry in terms of its popularity and market leadership from the
view point of dealers in the segment. 70 or more percent dealers from urban and semi
urban market and 60 percent dealers from the rural segment are of the view that this
brand is the market leader. Pigeon, like its market share from the perception of
consumers, keep the same position from dealer point of view also.
Analysis reveals that Prestige is the most popular brand of Pressure Cooker in
Kerala. Dealers who have commented this brand as the most popular one are
uniformly distributed (50 percent) across the market segments considered under

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study. When 25 percent of the semi urban dealers perceived Hawkins as the leading
brand, 20 percent of the urban dealers and 30 percent of rural dealers favor Butterfly.
A close analysis of the dealers opinion also shows that almost all brands of Pressure
Cooker have some sort of popularity in different market segments of Kerala.
The results of inferential analysis administered in this regard also reinstate the
validity of the finding that there is consensus among the dealers from different
product segments of kitchen appliances in Kerala market as to the popularity of
various brands traded in the product segments selected for the study.

7.4 Perceptions of Consumers in the Kitchen Appliances Market of Kerala


The third objective of the study is to analyze the perceptions of the consumers
of kitchen appliances in Kerala with regard to their brand choice, purchase decision,
product performance, retailer service etc. From the analysis of the data collected
from consumers of kitchen appliances, the following factors were found.
1. Two third of the consumers selected for the study have all the kitchen appliances
specified. About 20 percent of the total respondents do not use the grinder.
Location wise analysis reveals that the urban community has found more utility
in using the kitchen appliances than the rural, which can be related to the pattern
of their lifestyle. Such location wise difference among the consumers in the
pattern of ownership of the kitchen appliances is significant at 1 percent level.
2. Majority of the consumers of Mixer Grinder are using famous brands established
in the market; 46.7percent of them are using Maharaja brand, 33.3 percent are
using Sumeet brand and the balance 13.3 percent and 6.7 percent are shared by
Preethy and Inalsa respectively. Location wise analysis shows that Maharaja
Brand is mainly preferred by consumers in semi urban and rural areas while
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Sumeet is perceived better in quality by the urban segment. Such differences in


brand preferences by the consumers from different geographic segments of mixer
grinder market are found to be statistically significant through chi-square
analysis.
3. Laxmi and Butterfly are the most popular brands of Grinders among the selected
brands. 38.75 percent and 28.75 percent of consumers are using Laxmi and
Butterfly brand of Grinders respectively. Inalsa is the least popular product of this
kind. From this it is inferred that consumers in Kerala are fond of mainly popular
and established brands of grinders in the market. 40 percent of urban population,
33 percent of semi urban and 44 percent of rural population have got Laxmi
Brand of Grinders. Another 25 percent each of urban and semi urban and 44
percent of rural population have Butterfly brand. Maharaja is another popular
brand with their presence in all segments. Market wise differences in brand
preferences of consumers of Grinder market in Kerala are statistically proved by
the inferential analysis.
4. The consumers of Refrigerator look for a famous Brand with long years presence
in the market while making their purchase decision. When the popular brand in
white goods industry- Godrej, LG and whirlpool have consumers at equal rate (23
percent) in the segment of Refrigerator, other competitors in the same industryBPL and Samsung have a lesser percentage of 15.5 percent each.
Market wise analysis show that, two third of the urban market for
Refrigerator is equally shared by the traditional Indian brandsGodrej and BPL.
When Whirlpool enjoys 45 percent of semi urban market; 62.5 percent of the rural
demand is met by LG. When Samsung and LG have made its presence in all

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segments of market, Whirlpool is pushing their product mainly in semi urban area.
The results of the chi square analysis confirmed the statistical validity of the
hypothesis that there is significant difference among the customers of refrigerator
across the market in choosing their brand of refrigerator.
5. The brand Butterfly is the most popular brand of gas stove in the market of Kerala.
Most of the consumers of gas stove (61.7 percent) own Butterfly brand which is
considered to be a synonym of Gas Stove by the housemaids in Kerala. Remaining
38.3 percent of the market is shared by all other brands together.
66.7 percent of the urban population, 60 percent of the semi urban and 56 percent
of the rural population have got Butterfly brand of Gas stove. This shows that
majority of the consumers in all the three market segments prefer to buy Butterfly.
Other brands like Inalsa and Bajaj receive relatively very little demand. The
results of the hypothesis test found no statistically significant difference among
the customers from various market segments in choosing the brand of Gas stove
they are using in their kitchen.
6. All the established brands of Pressure Cooker have been influenced the buying
decision of consumers. 40 percent of consumers prefer Prestige, 33.3 percent opt
Butterfly and 26.7 percent selected Hawkins. Thus it is inferred that consumers of
pressure cooker have affinity to those brands which have been in the market for a
long period of time.
The location wise analysis found that the popularity of different brands of pressure
cooker is different in varied parts of Kerala kitchen appliances market.
7. With regard to the major factors influencing the brand choice of consumers, 60
percent of the respondents are choosing the Mixer Grinder because of established

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brand name and 20 percent consider the after sales service also along with the
brand name while 13.3 percent a look for cheaper price and 6.7 percent consider
only the after sales service while selecting their product.
All of the consumers who have Grinder opined brand name as the major
factor that persuade them to choose a particular brand of Grinder. A significant share
of the group (i.e. 60 percent) also consider the after sale service along with brand
name while making their purchase decision.
54 percent of the consumers make choice of their Refrigerator on the basis of
brand name as well as after sales support, while another 30.7 percent by taking into
account the brand name alone. The rest 15.3 percent consider only good after sales
service as the most important decisive factor of their brand selection process.
Among the consumers of Gas Stove 60 percent strongly look for the brand
name which has established a presence in almost all kitchens. 20 percent look only
for the after sales service while choosing their product whereas the rest 20 percent
look for the brand as well as better after sales service.
47 percent of the users of Pressure Cooker strongly look for the Brand name
which has established its presence in almost all kitchens. 40 percent give importance
to better after sales service in addition to the reputation of the brand. Only a nominal
fraction of the population is attracted to a particular brand of Pressure Cooker
because of lesser price and exchange offer given by the manufacturers. Thus almost
all consumers of different product segments believe the brand name and after sales
service to be the most important factors for evaluating the quality of the product they
intend to buy. However, some of the consumers from the segment of Pressure
Cooker consider the price factor also while making final decision on their purchase.

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8. The urban population always looks for both brand name and after sales service in
the selection of a particular Mixer Grinder. But 80 percent of semi urban
population looks for brand alone. In the case of rural population, one half of them
consider pricing as the major factor influencing their purchase decision. This can
be attributed to the relatively low income distribution of the rural population.
The urban and semi urban population while purchasing the product of
Grinder always look for both brand name and after sales service. Cent percent of
semi urban and 60 percent of urban give priority to these two aspects in choosing a
particular brand. But 75 percent of the rural consumers of Grinder consider better
after-sales service and the remaining 25 percent feels lesser price as the decisive
factor of their purchase. This is an indication of the fact that consumers from the
developed area of the state are more keen on reliability factor through established
brand and proven after sales service.
88 percent of rural population and 54 percent of urban population always
look for brand name alone in choosing their Refrigerator. 45 percent of semi urban
population and 29 percent of urban take into account brand as well as after sales
service while making their choice of refrigerator.
It shows that a full fraction of rural population, 50 percent of urban and 40
percent of semi urban population seek brand name in their product choice of gas
stove. Remaining 50 percent of urban population considers the brand name and also
the after sales service before making their final decision on purchase. Thus altogether
60 percent of the entire population takes brand name as the sole or most important
factor for evaluating the quality of the grinder they intend to buy.

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The majority of consumers look for brand name and after sales service while
choosing their pressure cooker. 60 percent of semi urban populations, 50 percent of
urban population are keen on brand and after sales service, while 75 percent of rural
population selects the product only because of the established brand name. 25
percent of rural population considers pricing as an important factor and they look for
lower priced items. This can also be ascribed to the lower income profile of the rural
population.
On interpreting the results of hypothesis test applied for knowing whether
reasons raised by the consumers of kitchen appliances in choosing their brands are
independent of their area of residence or not it is reasonable to infer that despite the
brand preferences of the consumers from different geographic locations evenly
distributed, they are diverged themselves in terms of their perception as to different
aspects of their product.
9.

Among the respondents of Mixer Grinder 73 percent are happy with the
performance of their product and 27 percent are satisfied with the current
performance of their product. Most of the consumers are either happy or
satisfied with the performance of their Mixer Grinders.
66 percent of the people who use the Grinder have the opinion that the

performance of this domestic device is good and 34 percent feel that it is satisfactory.
Hence the quality of Grinders available in the market is reasonably good.
76 percent of the consumers are happy with the performance of their
Refrigerator and 24percent are satisfied with the product. This reveals that the
performance of almost all the Refrigerators is reasonably good because non branded
manufacturers are not there in the segment of Refrigerators.

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87 percent of the consumers are happy with the performance of their Gas
Stoves and 13 percent satisfied with their product. This reveals that the performances
of almost all the Gas Stoves are reasonably good because Gas Stove manufacturers
strictly follow rigid quality control measures.
73 percent of the consumers are happy with the performance of their Pressure
Cookers and 13 percent are satisfied while the rest 13 percent have the opinion that
the performance of their Pressure Cooker is not satisfactory. This reveals that the
performance of almost all the Pressure Cookers is reasonably good because of the
intensive competition in this product segment; the manufacturers are giving more
thrust to the quality of the product.
10. 83 percent proportion of the urban population has good opinion about the
performance of their Mixer Grinder, when 75 percent of semi urban population
and 56 percent of rural population commented so. 17 percent of urban
population, 25 percent of semi urban and 44 percent of the rural population have
the opinion that the performance of their Mixer Grinder is satisfactory.
The majority of the urban population (ie.75 percent) has good opinion about
the performance of the Grinder which they are using for their domestic purpose. But
only 58 percent of the respondents from the semi urban area and 56 percent from the
rural area expressed their observation as good with regard to the performance the
Grinder they use at this degree of scale. However, 44 percent of rural, 42 percent of
semi urban and 25 percent urban consumers of this household device are satisfied
with its performance. This shows that with the same brand of Grinder where urban,
semi urban and rural population has different scale of opinion.

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80 percent of urban, 78 percent of semi urban and 68 percent of rural


population have good opinion about the performance of the Refrigerator. But 20
percent of urban and semi urban population and 32 percent of rural segment have the
opinion that it is satisfactory.
88 percent of the rural population, 85 percent of the semi urban and 75
percent of the urban population have good opinion about the performance of Gas
stoves they are using. This shows that the Gas stove manufacturers are keen in
supplying durable products at the same time providing good after sales service to
avoid the risk of loss of customers due to post purchase dissonance. The satisfied
customers from all segments together constitute 18 percent only.
83 percent of the urban, 80 percent of semi urban and 50 percent of rural
consumers have good opinion about the performance of Pressure cooker. 40 percent
of urban and 20 percent of semi urban are satisfied with the performance of their
Pressure cookers. In rural area 50 percent of the respondents are not satisfied with the
performance of their pressure cookers.
Inferential analysis found statistically significant difference among the
consumers from different market segments with regard to their level of satisfaction
with the performance of all selected kitchen appliances except the pressure cooker.
11. Majority of the consumers of Kitchen appliances under study prefer to purchase
the product from authorized dealers of that product.
12. Majority of the consumers of kitchen appliances unanimously opine that the
retailers do not show any interest in providing back up service to their customers.
Among the respondents, two third of the consumers of the Mixer Grinder, 82.5
percent of consumers of Grinder, 85 percent of the consumers of Refrigerator and

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about 80 percent of consumers of Gas stove and Pressure Cooker comment that
the retailers are not ready to spend time on after sales service and consider it as
the responsibility of the manufacturer. Since the retailer is the direct link with the
consumer in the distribution process, any negative response from the part of them
with respect to service support to the customers shall definitely affect the trust
and confidence of the consumers which in turn shall lead to the shift in their
product choice.
There were market wise differences in the perception of customers as to the
level of support extended by their dealers in getting their products being serviced. Of
the five kitchen appliances under study, except Gas stove, in all other four products
their customers from different market segments have differences of opinion in this
regard, which is found statistically significant at 1 percent level for Grinder and
Pressure cooker and at 5 percent level for Mixer grinder and Refrigerator.
13. More than 55 percent of consumers of Mixer Grinder and Grinder, 73 percent
each of consumers of Refrigerator and Gas Stove and 63 percent of the
consumers of Pressure Cooker opined that the after sales service provided by the
manufacturers of their products to them is really good. About 30 percent of the
consumers of Mixer Grinder and Grinder, more than 20 percent of the consumers
of Pressure Cooker and Refrigerator and 15 percent of Gas Stove customers are
satisfied with the present services offered by the suppliers of their products even
after making the sales. The proportion of unsatisfied customers in this regard is
very nominal. When we take these datas altogether, it can be said that 90
percent of the total customers is at least satisfied with the back-up service
provided by the suppliers and only 10 percent of them are upset with this aspect

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of product service. Most of the customers are satisfied with the efforts taken by
the manufacturers for bringing them better after sales service even though the
retailers do not show a keen interest in this regard. About 90 percent of the total
consumers selected for the study are satisfied with the after sales services.
14. The rural customers do not relatively feel good or sometimes even feel bad in
getting further service from their suppliers once they have made their purchase.
This might be attributed to the fact that service centers of majority of the popular
kitchen appliances manufacturing companies in India are mainly situated in
cities or towns which pose a problem to the rural customers to go to these
centers, which are far away from them, for getting their products serviced.
15. Majority of the consumers do not get any incentives for the referral made by
them. Only 10 percent of the customers get some form of incentives from their
dealers for referring the products to other people. However, the relative
percentage of customers who are getting such incentives is high in case of Gas
Stove and Pressure Cooker. This might be due to the fact that the volume of sale
and profit margin on these products are relatively high and its dealers are ready
to sacrifice a portion of their profit in favor of the customers for motivating them
to influence the purchase decision of their friends and relatives.
16. Most of the dealers in kitchen appliances do not offer any sort of incentives to the
buyer for their recommendations and referrals. However, when a product wise
analysis is made on this aspect, relatively more customers from urban and semi
urban areas are able to persuade their dealers to give them incentives for
recommending the brand to their friends and relatives.

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17. Cash incentives are the most common form of incentives offered by the dealers to
their existing customers for their referrals. Out of the 260 customers who have
received incentives, 145 of them get cash incentives. When product wise
analysis is made, it is found that except the customers of refrigerator, majority of
customers of kitchen appliances receive cash incentives. For the customers of
refrigerator dealers prefer to give additional extended warranty to the products
which they have already purchased from them. From this it can be deduced that
for the promotion of relatively small and cheaper kitchen appliances among the
group, dealers like to give cash incentives instead of additional extended
guarantee.
18. Dealers mainly give free gifts to their customers who have recommended his
name and the brand of the refrigerator to those known by him and who are going
to purchase a product of this kind. They also offer cash reduction for future
purchase and also cash incentives to such customers who give such referrals.
None of the rural customers of refrigerators receive any such incentive from their
dealers.
In the case of other four kitchen appliances, cash incentives were mainly
received by customers irrespective of their location status. The pattern of other
incentives offered to them by their dealers is more or less the same as that of Gas
stove.
Area of residence or location of a business is not a determinant of types of
incentives offered to the customers of kitchen appliances by its dealers. The analysis
did not find any statistically significant difference in this regard among the customers
in any of the kitchen appliances identified under study.

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7.5 Suggestions and Recommendations


As a natural outcome of the study the researcher would like to make some
suggestions and recommendations to both manufacturers and distributors for having
more effective marketing strategies to be followed by them in order to fulfill the
expectations of the consumers for a dynamic market for kitchen appliances in Kerala.
Most of these suggestions are based on the facts revealed by the study and some
others are on the basis of general and personal experiences of the researcher.

7.5.1 To the Manufacturers

Manufacturers should open new service centers in rural market places


which helps the consumers to get their products serviced without taking
them to the service centers situated in far away cities and towns. In Kerala
rapid urbanization is happening, the vanishing of urban-rural disparity
shall help the companies to diversify their market to the villages, for which
more sales and service outlets in rural places shall be a pre-requisite.

In the present competitive business world, the market penetration and


customer demand are not simply due to the product features, but due to the
effort taken by the dealers to place the product in the hands of the right
consumer. For this, dealers and distributors should be properly motivated
by the manufacturers through awards and incentives based on their
performance.

Quantity discounts or trade in allowance should be offered to customers


for making bulk purchases (individually or group) of the products of the
company.

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They should design a product mix which comprises of different range of


products fulfilling varied needs of the consumers and also by satisfying the
constraints bounded by their socio economic living conditions.

A rational pricing method has to be selected by the manufacturer in order


that the financial goals of the organization are achieved, fit the realities of
the market place and support the positioning of the product in consistence
with the other variables in the marketing mix.

Because of the severe competition existing in the marketing arena of


kitchen appliances, the manufacturer has to adopt the right strategy relating
to price adaptation.

In setting the price, the analysis of Price elasticity and sensitivity is also to
be taken in to consideration.

Manufacturers should use the retailers like convenience stores, discount


stores and off price leader etc. even though it is not popular in Indian
markets.

Manufacturers can use the advantages of direct selling and network


marketing by setting a marketing dept. for the same.

Manufacturers should initiate and co-ordinate the customer relationship


building for their products to improve the brand image.

Both financial and non financial support should be extended to dealers in


designing their marketing strategies.

Initiatives should be taken by the manufacturers for expanding their area of


operations to rural places by allotting new dealership there.

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Referral marketing system can be initiated for the promotion of sales


through good mouthing of valued customers.

7.5.2 To the Distributors

Retailers should extent more support to the consumers of kitchen


appliances in getting their products serviced in time. This enhances the
customer loyalty which shall be a crucial factor deciding the future success
of their business.

To attract more consumers, retailers can introduce referral commission


system to existing customers, also for introducing new ones by them.

Dealers should maintain good product portfolio in their rural shopping


outlets by incorporating all types of most modern kitchen appliances.
Unlike the past, it is believed that the rural population in Kerala is neither
socially nor economically backward. Increased income and educational
level of the rural, changes in their lifestyle etc demand more or less same
range of products as those demanded by the urban population of Kerala.

Product bundling packages ( Gas stove with pressure cooker )should be


offered to the consumers for boosting up the sale of supplementary
products.

Dealers should design their own promotional techniques rather than simply
going after the trade promotional strategies of manufactures.

Field agents can be appointed for canvassing the customers especially


during festive seasons.

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7.6 Scope of Further Research


The kitchen appliances industry has undergone drastic developments with the
introduction of more utility products such as micro wave oven, dish washer,
induction cooker, air fryer, food steamer etc. A study on marketing aspects of these
innovative products in the kitchen appliances industry under the changing economic
scenario of Kerala shall reveal the changing profile of the consumer behavior in the
State. Kerala is a consumer state and our neighboring state like Tamilnadu often
known as producer state of electrical/electronic appliances. A study comparing the
buying behavior of people in these two states with special emphasis to kitchen
appliances market shall definitely help its manufacturers to know how the people
who gives importance to value and those who gives importance to utility divergence
themselves in their buying process. In the present global regime, a lot of kitchen
appliances are imported to India from our competitor countries like China, Taiwan
etc. What impact these imports is making on the domestic kitchen appliances market
shall be a worthy topic to research.

7.7 Conclusion
The study has found uniformity among the manufacturers of kitchen
appliances in Kerala with regard to the approach in both designing and
implementation of their marketing strategies. Regardless of the product they deal
with or the market in which they operate, these manufacturing firms are pursuing
multi brand strategies and trying to have customer level creation of brand equity.
Dealers in this market are keeping good brand and product portfolio which bring
them in a position to not depend upon one or two manufacturing firms to decide their
business fortunes. Brand wise differences are there in most of the product segments
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in kitchen appliances of market of Kerala and the consumers have their own reasons
for choosing a particular brand. So each and every firms operating in this market
should identify what a customer from a particular market segment really expects
from him and then try to produce and deliver it in the most effective way. While
doing so, none of them should forget the acumen of modern marketing retaining
existing customer base is more important than attracting the new ones.

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