Customer Needs, Wants, and Demands & Strategic Decision Making

Needs, wants, and demands are the three main basic terms in marketing definition, these three terms helps a lot for taking strategic decisions. Marketers should know about needs, wants, and demands in order to identify the target markets and for better positioning. Customer needs, wants, and demands are interrelated and arise on the basis of requirements, willingness, and ability, and all these depend on the requirement, demographic aspects, socio-cultural aspects and income levels.

These three vital terms play an important role in the marketing management and facilitate dealing with many monotonous problems while marketing products and services.

Why should marketers know about customer’s needs, wants, and demands?

  • To know the target customers and target markets
  • To take strategic decisions and implementation
  • To promote the products with suitable advertisements
  • To maximize sales and profits
  • To know customer’s willingness to buy the products
  • To know the number of customers who are able to buy their products
  • To know the influence of demographic, socio-cultural aspects and income levels on the buying behavior of consumers
  • To predict sales in a particular target market


Needs are basic requirements such as food, shelter, clothing, water and safety. Human survival is not possible without fulfilling these needs, here a need show the status of deprivation. According to marketers point of view, human needs can create repeated sales irrespective of wants and status.

If the marketer’s products are in the needs category then it is not required to put extra promotional efforts to maximize sales and for repeated purchases. Needs forces the customers to buy the products continuously and repeatedly.

In order to fulfill the basic requirements, humans sacrifice their wants, fantasies, and dreams also. So depending on the product category market decides sales and profits. Products related to the agriculture sector, water, textile and fast moving consumer goods etc, comes under need category. customers give very less preference to brands in the case of products related to need category. For example, if a person feels thirsty then he/she simply buy water and fulfills the need but they do not give much preference to a particular brand and they do not wait for longer hours. This is the reason there we can see sales for similar products at the same place. Hence, so many brands are offering similar products in order to satisfy the growing customer needs.

Advantages in producing and marketing needs category products

  • Needs are basic requirements, so no need to put extra efforts to maximize sales.
  • Competition does not show much influence on sales.
  • Customers give primary importance to buy the need category products. Ex food, clothes
  • No need to use celebrity endorsement in order to create sales, if do so, it does not show much difference in sales because customers buy need category products without forcing them or influencing them.
  • The cost of advertisement is very less.
  • Customer’s preferences become very less while purchasing need category products.
  • Differences in individual income levels and nations economic conditions do not show much influence in the consumption and purchase of need category products.


Wants are not basic requirements and these are not essential for human survival, but there exists a relation between needs and wants. If a need arises then it stimulates human tastes and preferences and finally wants arises, because wants are not immediate needs. Wants are not permanent and can change depending on the time, people and location. For example, if a person feels thirsty then he/she can drink water to fulfill the need but the wants force him/her to drink cool drink or fruit juice.

Wants are not mandatory but marketers promote the want category products and services in such a way that these products are a mandatory part of life. In fact, wants are not necessary for human survival.

Human wants are playing a vital role in the production of innovative products and products with different features. Changing tastes and preferences of the customers forces the marketers to create new products and services

In the case of needs, customers do not give much preference to the brands, whereas in the case of wants customers purchase what they want only. These wants are not immediate needs so that customers can spend the time to select the desired color, flavor and features.

To promote the want category products marketers need to put extra efforts in order to satisfy the changing tastes and preferences and wants as well. In the case of want category products, competitors can grab the sales with their strategic marketing approaches. Customer wants can give a space to complementary goods and substitute products also.


Pizzas, ice creams, juices, branded cloths, fine quality leather footwear, ornaments, and well-furnished house etc.

Why marketers should know about want category products

  • Marketers should put extra efforts in order to satisfy the changing customer wants
  • Threat of competition is very high
  • Customers give importance to buy specific goods only
  • Strategic promotional approaches are necessary to create sales
  • Cost of advertisement is high
  • Customer preferences are very high while purchasing want category products
  • Difference in the income levels show influence in the purchase decisions because customers give preference to the needs rather than wants
  • Human wants can create a scope to different product lines and product mix
  • Marketers can attract target customers by influencing them with different approaches


Willingness to buy and ability to pay creates demand for a particular product. Human wants can create willingness and here, buying power can convert these wants into demands. For example, if a person is willing to buy a gold chain then the buying power or ability to pay should support his/her willingness, then only it becomes a demand for the gold chain.

So the marketers should analyze the market conditions and income levels of the target customers. If the marketers do not concentrate on economic conditions of the country and per capita income, then they may not create sales effectively, though their product is highly qualitative and value created.

Willingness to buy and ability to pay creates demand, for example, Gold, Diamonds, Luxury cars, Star hotels etc

Know more about demands

  • The products which can create demand are premium products and high priced
  • Customer willingness is very high towards purchase of these products
  • Customer’s income levels decide whether they buy the product or not
  • A product cannot create sales effectively when the buying power of the customer is not supported
  • Ability to buy can convert the wants into demands
  • Marketers should take production and supply decisions according to the market demand only.