Definition of Consumer Market

by Neil Kokemuller; Updated September 26, 2017
Greengrocer handing out a fruit to a consumer.

A marketplace is a distinct group of potential customers that a company could target with its products and services. A consumer market is a marketplace consisting of household consumers who buy goods for individual or family consumption. It is different than a business market, in which businesses sell goods and services to other companies.

Consumer Market Categories

Businesses target consumers in many market categories, including consumable goods, soft home goods, durable goods, food, beverages and services. Companies that sell to consumer markets offer products in individual units so customers can purchase just the amount needed for home use.

Consumer Market Channels

Retail is the most significant channel of delivery to consumer markets. Retailers buy goods from manufacturers or wholesalers, break them into consumable units and market them to consumers from brick-and-mortar stores. Online retailers market goods to consumers and then ship the products to their homes. The direct-to-consumer industry is a niche way of marketing to consumers. Companies like Mary Kay and Tupperware have sales representatives who target individual consumers door to door or through in-home parties.

About the Author

Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.

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