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Article
Publication date: 22 March 2013

Stephan M. Liozu and Andreas Hinterhuber

How do pricing methods affect firm performance? From both an academic as well as a managerial perspective this question is important. The literature is silent on the…

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5574

Abstract

Purpose

How do pricing methods affect firm performance? From both an academic as well as a managerial perspective this question is important. The literature is silent on the relationship between pricing approach and company performance. The aim of this paper is to address this research gap.

Design/methodology/approach

To address this practical and theoretical deficit, the authors surveyed 1,812 professionals involved in pricing to measure the influence of pricing approach on firm performance.

Findings

The authors find a positive relationship between value‐based pricing (but not competition‐based pricing) and firm performance. Furthermore, the authors find that the three pricing orientations differently influence firm pricing capabilities, which in turn are positively related to firm performance. This paper is thus the first paper documenting a positive relationship between value‐based pricing and firm performance through a quantitative research design.

Originality/value

These findings have important theoretical as well as practical implications and suggest that all firms, regardless of size, industry or geography, benefit from value‐based pricing.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 51 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2012

Stephan M. Liozu and Andreas Hinterhuber

This paper seeks to examine the influence of pricing orientation on the price‐setting process in industrial firms.

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4130

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to examine the influence of pricing orientation on the price‐setting process in industrial firms.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors designed a qualitative inquiry based on the principles of grounded theory with 44 managers in 15 industrial firms located across ten US states. These managers included CEOs, pricing and marketing professionals, and financial professionals working in three industries (automotive, building products and chemicals).

Findings

The study's results reflect similarities and differences in the experiences of managers in industrial firms using all three pricing orientations. It reveals stark contrasts by pricing orientation with respect to how firms organize for pricing, manage the pricing process, make product pricing decisions, manage the transition to more advanced pricing orientations, and develop internal capabilities to face uncertain and ambiguous decisions. The findings also uncover contrasting price‐setting processes by pricing orientation and the balanced used of scientific versus intuitive decision‐making processes.

Practical implications

Pricing is often a neglected element of the industrial marketing mix. This study offers a variety of organizational practices by pricing orientation. The results highlight how best‐in‐class companies that adopted modern pricing practices to derive product prices are organized and how they reach pricing decisions.

Originality/value

This study studies the commonly accepted pricing orientations and links them to organizational structure and decision‐making theory. This study contributes to bridging pricing and organizational theories.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

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Article
Publication date: 28 October 2014

Armando Calabrese and Federico De Francesco

Demand-based pricing fixes price according to customers’ perceptions of service value and to their resulting willingness to pay. This pricing approach enables service…

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3223

Abstract

Purpose

Demand-based pricing fixes price according to customers’ perceptions of service value and to their resulting willingness to pay. This pricing approach enables service companies to align their prices to customers’ preferences and to their expenditure propensity. Accordingly, it can generate higher margins than other pricing approaches. Nevertheless, this approach is difficult to implement operationally. Consequently, in order to overcome these implementation difficulties, the purpose of this paper is to provide a demand-based pricing approach based on the user-friendly technique of service blueprint (SB).

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology relies on the design science leads. Design science deals with creating artefacts or models for supporting human or organizational purposes; such artefacts have to be assessed against criteria of utility or value for users. Accordingly, an experimental action research is performed for both implementing and testing the proposed pricing approach.

Findings

Starting from the main difficulties hindering implementation of demand-based pricing, SB is proved to enable companies to overcome such difficulties and to support its implementation. Moreover, by employing SB, an innovative approach for fixing service prices is provided.

Practical implications

The proposed approach enables managers of service companies to overcome difficulties of demand-based pricing and to employ pricing strategies according to demand-based drivers.

Originality/value

In line with a recent call for research on service pricing, this paper develops a new pricing approach, which is able to promote demand-based pricing.

Details

Business Process Management Journal, vol. 20 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-7154

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Book part
Publication date: 1 November 2008

Andreas Hinterhuber

After pioneering, but insular, work on the conceptualization and measurement of customer value in business markets undertaken in the 80s and 90s, interest in this topic is…

Abstract

After pioneering, but insular, work on the conceptualization and measurement of customer value in business markets undertaken in the 80s and 90s, interest in this topic is substantial since the beginning of this decade. Despite this recent interest, marketing scholars concur that value in business markets is still an under-researched subject. This contribution to the debate is threefold. The paper first proposes an own model of customer value conceptualization in business markets; based on several rounds of testing this theoretically grounded model in managerial practice indications exist to conclude that this model may offer benefits over current models.

Secondly, the paper provides a comprehensive survey of pricing approaches in industrial markets. The paper integrates this literature overview with own empirical findings. Concurrently the paper summarizes extant research on the link between pricing approach and profitability in industrial markets. The paper thirdly proposes a framework for value delivery and value-based pricing strategies in industrial markets. Proposing such a framework is both useful as well as necessary. Useful, since this framework guides new product development and pricing decisions and assists in the implementation of price-repositioning strategies for existing products; necessary, since the theoretical and practical adoption of value-based delivery and pricing strategies may have suffered from the lack of a unifying conceptual framework. Two case studies, one involving the pricing decision for a major product launch at a global chemical company, the other involving value delivery at an industrial equipment manufacturer, illustrate the practical applicability of the proposed framework.

Details

Creating and managing superior customer value
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-173-2

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Article
Publication date: 13 September 2019

Juliana Ventura Amaral and Reinaldo Guerreiro

Empirical studies have found that cost-based pricing remains dominant in pricing practice and suggest that practice conflicts with marketing theory, which recommends…

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1614

Abstract

Purpose

Empirical studies have found that cost-based pricing remains dominant in pricing practice and suggest that practice conflicts with marketing theory, which recommends value-based prices. However, empirical studies have yet to examine whether cost-plus formulas represent the pricing approach or essence.

Design/methodology/approach

This study aims to address the factors that explain price setting whereby the cost-plus formula is not just the pricing approach but also the pricing essence. This examination is grounded in a survey conducted on 380 Brazilian industrial companies.

Findings

The results show that, for price-makers, the cost-based pricing essence is positively associated with four factors (two obstacles to deploying value-based pricing, company size and differentiation), but it is negatively related to one factor (premium pricing strategy). For price-takers, the cost-based pricing essence is positively associated with four factors (two obstacles to deploying value-based pricing, coercive isomorphism and use of full costs), but it is negatively related to five factors (one obstacle to deploying value-based pricing, company size, competitors’ ability to copy, normative isomorphism and experience).

Originality/value

The key contribution of this paper is demonstrating that cost-plus formulas do not go against the incorporation of competitors and value information. This study reveals that it is possible to set prices based on either value or competitors’ prices while simultaneously preserving the simplicity of the cost-plus formulas. Via the margin, firms may connect costs to information about competition and value. The authors also demonstrate the drawbacks of not segregating companies into price-makers and price-takers and an excessive focus on the pricing approach at the expense of pricing essence.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 34 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2018

Reinaldo Guerreiro and Juliana Ventura Amaral

While the gap between economic theory and companies’ practice, regarding to the pricing setting, has been extensively explored and explained, the new gap between the…

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2433

Abstract

Purpose

While the gap between economic theory and companies’ practice, regarding to the pricing setting, has been extensively explored and explained, the new gap between the marketing normative view and companies’ practice needs further clarification. In this way, the paper aims to investigate whether marketing researchers’ claim that the use of cost-based price approach prevails over the use of value-based price approach is pertinent.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is guided by the following research question: “Does price-setting based on cost plus margin go against the value-based price approach?” The answer to this question is grounded in reflections on results of previous research studies and in a case study conducted in an industrial company. Because of the qualitative focus of the present study, hypotheses are not established, but rather the following proposition: certain companies use the mechanics of cost plus margin in the sale price-setting process, but it does not necessarily mean that these companies set prices based on cost.

Findings

The arguments, propositions and the case study findings provide the logical sequence and the support required to conclude that price-setting based on cost plus margin does not always conflict with the value-based price approach. As a result, it may be claimed that the general proposition established is theoretically valid, i.e. using a price formula that contains the elements cost and margin does not necessarily mean that the company sets prices based on cost.

Originality/value

The key contribution of this paper is demonstrating that in certain business environments, such as, B2B, using the price formation mechanics based on cost plus margin is the way found by companies to enable the approach adopted. The approach may be cost-based or value-based price. This is the first study that explicitly reveals how B2B companies may set prices based on value while simultaneously preserving the simplicity of cost plus margin formulas. Researchers have significant misconceptions about these formulas: in previous studies, they classified all price-making companies as those adopting the cost-based price approach simply because they used formulas containing the element cost.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 33 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Article
Publication date: 4 July 2008

Andreas Hinterhuber

Customer value‐based pricing is increasingly recognised by academics and practitioners as the most effective approach to pricing for companies wishing to achieve increased

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28560

Abstract

Purpose

Customer value‐based pricing is increasingly recognised by academics and practitioners as the most effective approach to pricing for companies wishing to achieve increased profitability and sustained success. However, despite this apparent support for the implementation of value‐based pricing, the practical reality is that more than 80 percent of companies continue to price their products and services primarily on the basis of costs and/or competitive price levels. The present study investigates this phenomenon and identifies the main reasons for this gap between aspiration and reality.

Design/methodology/approach

A two‐stage empirical approach is employed: first, in a qualitative research, the phenomenon of implementation of value‐based strategies with groups of business executives participating in pricing workshops is explored. The result of this qualitative stage was then used to develop a questionnaire which was tested upon a significantly larger and more stratified population. Finally cluster analysis to summarize the results of this quantitative research stage was employed.

Findings

Based on a survey of 81 executives representing a wide range of B2B and B2C industries in Germany, Austria, China, and the USA, five main obstacles to the implementation of value‐based pricing strategies have been identified: deficits in value assessment; deficits in value communication; lack of effective market segmentation; deficits in sales force management; and lack of support from senior management. The paper also provides a range of remedies to overcome these obstacles.

Originality/value

In extant literature there exists a gap between: the widespread understanding of the superiority of customer value‐based pricing strategies; and the circumstance that customer value‐based pricing strategies are currently the least widely diffused major pricing approach. We cover thus gap by highlighting which obstacles exist to the implementation of value‐based pricing strategies and provide a series of remedies to overcome these obstacles.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 29 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

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Article
Publication date: 12 July 2013

Stephan M. Liozu and Andreas Hinterhuber

The purpose of this paper is to identify a set of specific activities and a set of competencies associated with above‐average firm performance.

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1753

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify a set of specific activities and a set of competencies associated with above‐average firm performance.

Design/methodology/approach

Quantitative survey of 748 respondents.

Findings

It was found that four key competencies differentiate high performing from low performing companies: organizational confidence; pricing capabilities; organizational change capacity; and championing behaviors by top management. The research also identifies a set of specific activities that are linked with superior firm performance: activities directed at the improvement of pricing effectiveness (e.g. trainings, pricing tools; pricing performance reviews); improvements in product differentiation and product quality (e.g. through innovation and research aimed at identifying and creating customer value); increased sense of organizational confidence (e.g. optimism, resilience, “can do”‐attitude); improved support of top management; improved ability to stick to list prices and minimization of discounting behaviors; and finally, enhanced cultural adaptability to respond to changing market conditions.

Research limitations/implications

Through a quantitative research design, the authors document the link between pricing capabilities, organizational confidence and superior firm performance.

Practical implications

The authors identify both specific activities, as well as higher order competencies, practising managers need to develop in order to increase firm performance via pricing. Taking a hypothetical company as example, the authors' data show that, on average, a one point improvement on a seven‐point scale in organizational confidence leads to a 4 per cent improvement in return on sales.

Originality/value

Our research highlights which organizational competencies drive firm performance. Specifically this research is the first quantitative survey which documents a positive relationships between organizational confidence and firm performance.

Details

Journal of Business Strategy, vol. 34 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0275-6668

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Book part
Publication date: 24 October 2015

Katharina Maria Hofer, Lisa Maria Niehoff and Gerhard A. Wuehrer

In this paper, we examine the elements of pricing approaches in export businesses and their performance in an international environment. The elements of pricing approaches…

Abstract

Purpose

In this paper, we examine the elements of pricing approaches in export businesses and their performance in an international environment. The elements of pricing approaches consist of cost-based, competitor-based, and value-based decisions made by different levels of management. By providing an integrated, holistic view, we investigate how different types of export-pricing strategies influence export performance, and which elements strengthen or attenuate the outcomes of strategic actions.

Methodology/approach

Using data from a survey of 172 export managers, we test our hypotheses in a two-step approach. First, we use an unsupervised approach to group the export companies and to validate the cluster solution internally and externally. Second, we test our hypotheses regarding export performance.

Findings

The results show that the types of export-pricing strategies are unequally distributed, and the elements of the strategies have different complexities. Export performance varies significantly by type of pricing orientation used.

Details

International Marketing in the Fast Changing World
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-233-7

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2013

Paul T.M. Ingenbleek and Ivo A. van der Lans

This article aims to address the relationship between price strategies and price‐setting practices. The first derive from a normative tradition in the pricing literature…

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21659

Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to address the relationship between price strategies and price‐setting practices. The first derive from a normative tradition in the pricing literature and the latter from a descriptive tradition. Price strategies are visible in the market, whereas price‐setting practices are hidden behind the boundaries of an organization.

Design/methodology/approach

The study deals with the relationship between price strategies and price‐setting practices that refer to the use of customer value, competition, and cost information. Hypotheses are tested on survey data on 95 small and medium‐sized manufacturing and service firms in The Netherlands.

Findings

The results show that price strategies and price‐setting practices are related because strategies are implemented through price‐setting practices. However, some firms do not pursue any of the strategies indicated by pricing theory, some firms engage in practices for no clear strategic reasons, and some firms insufficiently engage in appropriate practices to implement their strategic choices.

Research limitations/implications

The results are limited to small companies. Researchers should examine why firms may not pursue any price strategy that is offered by pricing theory. They may also focus on organizational learning and pricing capabilities.

Practical implications

Managers need greater awareness about the price strategies they can use, should be cautious about a potential mismatch between price strategies and price‐setting practices, and should reassess whether their firms are capable of engaging in the appropriate practices.

Originality/value

Linking price strategies to price‐setting practices reduces conceptual confusion in the pricing literature and may help to specify the gap between pricing theory and practice.

1 – 10 of 515