Understanding Consumer Buying Behavior in Africa

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Recent economic growth trends in Africa have raised awareness among businesses about the attractiveness of its market potential. There is therefore an increasing academic interest in understanding the attitudes, preferences and behavior of African consumers. This chapter reviews some of the influential academic studies conducted in the area between 1996 and 2016. Our synthesis of these studies shows that most of the studies have been guided by Western-inspired perspectives on marketing and the results have been insightful in as much as they have provided confirmation and extension of existing marketing models. However, our review exposes several issues that the existing studies have left unexplored. In light of the fact that there is continued high level of poverty on the African continent despite recent years of economic growth, we consider it imperative for marketing scholars to focus attention on how marketing and consumption can facilitate high and sustained growth that can lift the majority of Africans out of poverty. This requires investigations into mechanisms for consumption-driven growth in different African countries, especially in the rural areas where the incidence of poverty in highest. We suggest that such investigations may require a shift from the conventional marketing paradigm and methods of investigation to the use of multiple paradigms and methodologies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMarketing Management in Africa
EditorsGeorge Tesar, Steven Anderson, Hassimi Traore, Jens Graff
Number of pages17
Place of PublicationNew York
Publication date1 Jan 2018
Pages207 -223
ISBN (Print)9781138714380
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-315-23136-5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018

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