The make‐up, structure, functioning and outputs of multi‐person buying decision‐making units, commonly referred to as “buying centers,” have received substantial attention in the business marketing literature. Although most business buying decisions are non‐static in nature, theorists and researchers have been hard pressed to effectively capture the dynamic nature of business buyers’ decision‐making processes. This paper presents a synthesis of recent buying center research and reports the findings of a study which attempted to capture “process effects” in buying center structure during the buying process. Study findings affirm the widely held belief that buying centers change over time and provide interesting insights regarding how these decision‐making units change in structure and make‐up over time. The resulting implications and caveats of these findings for business marketers are discussed.
Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 1, 1998
Keywords: Business‐to‐business marketing; Decision making; Group think; Industrial purchasing; Purchasing techniques
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