To identify the factors that influence shoppers' satisfaction with their “primary” grocery store, and those that encourage them to continue patronising it despite being presented with a significant inducement to shop elsewhere.
A structured questionnaire containing 31 variables relating to shopping behaviour and satisfaction was administered to 934 shoppers leaving a number of grocery stores in an Australian city during a two‐week period. Results were used to construct two mathematical models predicting customer satisfaction and store loyalty, from which two research hypotheses were derived.
The results of model estimation show that factors with a significant influence on store satisfaction have little in common with others that impel shoppers to remain loyal to one store. Indeed, there was no evidence in this study that shoppers' overall satisfaction was by itself a significant influence on continued patronage.
The questionnaire did not ask questions, judged to be intrusive, relating to respondents' income level, education background, employment status or household size – characteristics known to have a bearing on perception of risk associated with switching to an unfamiliar store and hence potentially to inhibit action. It would be instructive in future research to assess the extent to which demographic characteristics mediate perceptions of financial, psychological and social risk, and their influence on satisfaction and loyalty.
Retailers often do not recognise that what influences customer satisfaction is not the same as what engenders store loyalty, and consequently do not allocate scarce resources systematically among tactics influencing one or the other. Unless they are vigilant to changing consumer behaviour patterns, they will not be able to isolate in their strategy the elements of the retail mix that could insulate their loyal customers from responding to competitors' special offers.
This study introduces intelligence gatherers and strategic planners in the retail context to an important distinction between general satisfaction and specific loyalty.
Miranda, M.J., Kónya, L. and Havrila, I. (2005), "Shoppers' satisfaction levels are not the only key to store loyalty", Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 23 No. 2, pp. 220-232. https://doi.org/10.1108/02634500510589958Download as .RIS
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