Consumer behavior is important for businesses because it helps them anticipate what customers want, learn how to attract customers, and understand how to best present their products and services.
When a business understands how customers choose a product or what influences them to select one option over another, they have the advantage of being able to present themselves appropriately. It's all about selling to market and being able to target the segment of a population that will be interested in what a business has to offer.
Consumer behavior also helps businesses understand exactly what information their customers have -- and where there are gaps in their understanding of products, features, or services. For example, a software company might be targeting either web designers or users with virtually no computer experience. The resulting advertisements, manuals, and sales tactics will be more effective if the marketers understand the behavior of the clients.
To understand consumer behavior, a business can use market research or read secondary research that's already been performed. Surveys, focus groups, and observation of customer behavior are all powerful tools that can help a business better understand its customer base.
Customers are a major factor that decides whether a business succeeds or fails. Being able to connect with them is absolutely essential. Understanding consumer behavior -- essentially the psychology of marketing -- is one way for a business to anticipate and meet the needs of its current and future customers.