Meaning of Consumer Awareness
Consumer awareness refers to making customers aware of their rights and duties. It simply means educating people regarding company, goods, services, processes, and policies. This is a program that aims at keeping customers well informed while making purchases for their consumption.
Customer awareness programs are designed for conserving the welfare of customers and protects them from being cheated in the market. It communicating all information to customers enables them in selecting the right products at fair prices. They are saved from being exploited in the market in the form of duplicate or poor quality goods, overcharging, underwriting, and getting mislead by false advertisement.
Consumer rights and responsibilities play a crucial role in keeping customers fully informed so that they behave responsibly in the market. Consumer rights are rights that are available to customers while making their purchases in the market. These rights aim at promoting fair dealings among producers and consumers. Whereas, consumer responsibilities are various duties that customers are entitled to perform as a well-informed customer. A brief explanation about customer rights and responsibilities are discussed in the points given below.
Consumer Rights and Responsibilities
- Right to safety: This right says that customers should be provided with proper quality and long-lasting products by producers. They should be protected from hazardous products, one which can cause damage to their life and property. Only AGMARK or ISI marked products should be purchased by them.
- Right to be Informed: It means that the producer should provide complete details regarding their products to consumers. They should not try to hide anything which would help in making the right decisions. Information such as product price, quality, content, quantity, purity, and standards should be printed fairly on the packaging of products.
- Right to Choose: Consumer has a complete right to select the product of his choice with full freedom. He should be fully satisfied with his choices of products chosen from a variety of products. The seller should not pressurize the customers for buying goods according to him.
- Right to seek redressal: It says that customers can raise complaints in case of his exploitation and unfair trade practices. They have a right to the proper settlement of their grievances.
- Right to be heard: Consumers’ complaints should be heard timely at concerned organizations set up for this purpose. These organizations should take into account the interest of customers and protect their welfare.
- Right to consumer education: Consumer has full right to be informed regarding all information necessary to become a well-aware customer. They should properly know all rights and responsibilities they need to exercise to act wisely.
- Must Exercise Rights: Customers must make use of all rights available to them under consumer protection act. They should exercise when and wherever their need arises.
- Must be critically aware: They should acquire all details regarding product such as their price, quantity, and quality. It is their duty to acquire all information before making purchases and should not be dependent upon or believe blindly whatever seller is saying.
- Must properly use products: It is the duty of customers to use products fairly and with the utmost care. They should not think that product can be used as they want in a rough manner as it can be replaced within its guarantee period.
- Must take cash memo: Customer should duly maintain all records of transactions with the seller. He must take a cash memo for all products he purchases as they are used as documents for filing complaints in a court of law.
- Must respect the environment: Consumers should try to understand the effect of their consumption pattern on the environment. They must act in an eco-friendly manner. Steps, like avoiding littering of waste and contributing to pollution, should be taken by them.