International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management

ISSN: 0959-0552

Article publication date: 8 November 2011



Towers, N. (2011), "Editorial", International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol. 39 No. 12. https://doi.org/10.1108/ijrdm.2011.08939laa.001



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Article Type: Editorial From: International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Volume 39, Issue 12

This edition has a broad retailing theme. The first two submissions investigate the USA and Saudia Arabia, including retail format choice among male shoppers and e-shopping continuance intentions. The final two papers examine the four-tiered, indirect sales-and-distribution (S&D) model, and the effect of 3D virtual models’ body shapes on consumer’s perceived risk reduction.

The first contribution by Carpenter and Brosdahl explores retail format choice among male shoppers, using desired store attributes and shopping orientations as predictors of format choice. Male shoppers in the USA were surveyed via the Internet and multiple regression was used to evaluate the data. The findings identify distinctive predictors of male patronage across several retail formats including department stores, discounters, category killers, dollar stores and Internet only stores. The findings identify desired store attributes and shopping orientations of frequent male patrons of these formats. The information provided is useful for advancing retail format choice as well as for retailers to better understand male patrons. This research provides retailers with specific knowledge to identify males who are likely to frequent specific retail formats based on desired store attributes and shopping orientations.

The second paper by Al-Maghrabi and Dennis proposes a model of e-shopping continuance intentions that incorporates the revised technology acceptance model and expectation confirmation theory and evaluates the expanded model in a new context: Saudi Arabia. The sample consists of Internet users in Saudi Arabia and a structural equation model confirms model fit. The findings suggest that perceived usefulness, enjoyment, and social pressure are determinants of online shopping continuance in Saudi Arabia, where both male and female groups are equivalent. The structural weights are also largely equivalent, but the regression paths from perceived usefulness to continuous intention are not invariant between men and women. Notwithstanding that the study finds few differences between men’s and women’s e-shopping behaviour, the findings for women are important because of the special role that e-shopping can play in Muslim countries, including Saudi Arabia where there are cultural and legal restrictions on women’s activities such as driving. This research suggests that online strategies cannot ignore either the direct or indirect behaviour differences of continuance intentions.

The third paper by Rickards and Ritsert analyzes problems involved in using a four-tiered, indirect S&D model and describes how a manufacturing small and medium-sized enterprise’s (SME’s) controller can master them. The research methodological approach taken is an in-depth case study of an Asian SME selling its homeopathic remedies through European wholesalers and retailers to geographically dispersed consumers. The case study provides four main conclusions. First, entering into an indirect S&D relationship with wholesalers and retailers is just one more step along the road to outsourcing an enterprise’s non-core functions in a global economy. Second, as long as an SME is on this road, its controller must make the best of the situation and master the resulting complexity in the areas of S&D. Third, above all, integrating business partners’ wholesale and retail trade data into the SME’s own MIS represents a major technical challenge. Fourth, presenting a clear, complete, and multidimensional overview of sales figures and inventory levels is a task likely to demand more time and attention in the future.

The final contribution by Shim and Lee examines the effects product presentation types on consumer’s perceived risk reduction about apparel attributes (i.e. silhouette, colour, texture and fit), and the effect of 3D virtual models’ body shapes on consumer’s perceived risk reduction about apparel fit. Internet shopping trust and consumer’s actual body size have been considered as moderating variables, respectively. Three types of web sites were developed for the experiment and participants were recruited by a survey firm, explored the web sites and filled out online questionnaires. The findings suggest that 3D virtual models significantly reduce perceived risk about the four apparel attributes more than 2D images. Especially, they are effective to reduce perceived risk about apparel fit when their bodies represent a consumer’s actual body shape. This study provides empirical support for the informative benefits of 3D virtual models, such as conveying detailed product information and sequentially reducing consumer’s product risk, which highlights the value of this study. The informative role of 3D virtual models explained in this study implies that the benefits of 3D virtual technology could be conceptualized as a multi-dimensional construct embracing various functional values.

Neil Towers

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