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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1991

Arun Sharma and Douglas M. Lambert

Logistics managers need to collect timely and accurate data oncustomers′ needs, as well as customer perceptions of the firm′s andcompetitors′ performance levels. Today, a…

Abstract

Logistics managers need to collect timely and accurate data on customers′ needs, as well as customer perceptions of the firm′s and competitors′ performance levels. Today, a large number of companies collect this from their salesforce – a good, inexpensive and timely source of customer and competitive information but caution is needed since a majority of salespeople are inaccurate. Reviews the conceptual issues associated with using the salesforce to collect information and reports results of an empirical study which examined the accuracy of salesforce information.

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International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 21 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

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Book part
Publication date: 26 August 2010

Sergio Biggemann

This paper reports the results of a three-year-long research on business relationships, relying on qualitative data gathered through multiple-case study research of four…

Abstract

This paper reports the results of a three-year-long research on business relationships, relying on qualitative data gathered through multiple-case study research of four focal companies operating in Australia. The industry settings are as follows: steel construction, vegetable oils trading, aluminum and steel can manufacture, and imaging solutions. The research analyzes two main aspects of relationships: structure and process. This paper deals with structure describing it by the most desired features of intercompany relationships for each focal company. The primary research data have been coded drawing on extant research into business relationships. The main outcome of this part of the research is a five construct model composed by trust, commitment, bonds, distance, and information sharing that accounts for all informants’ utterances about relationship structure.

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Organizational Culture, Business-to-Business Relationships, and Interfirm Networks
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-306-5

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Article
Publication date: 3 September 2020

Mark P. Leach, Rhett T. Epler and Sijun Wang

This paper aims to explore the usage of selling influence tactics across prospective customers with differing information-related needs.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the usage of selling influence tactics across prospective customers with differing information-related needs.

Design/methodology/approach

The research study uses an exploratory critical incident technique (CIT) methodology to identify and examine salesperson influence tactics.

Findings

This study identifies and explores the use of salesperson influence tactics across three information-based conditions often encountered by salespeople (i.e. information seeking customers, informed customers with information inaccuracies and informed customers making sub-optimal decisions). Regardless of condition, salespeople readily used non-coercive information exchange tactics. Whereas, recommendations and ingratiation tactics were applied by more effective salespeople when interacting with informed customers with information deficiencies. Furthermore, salespeople report executing less effectively with prospects with inaccurate preexisting information and with prospects making flawed or sub-optimal decisions.

Research limitations/implications

Findings illustrate the need for a renewed focus on salesperson influence tactics, the conditions under which they are effective, and how salespeople adapt their influence tactics to various situations. The exploratory nature of this study limits the generalizability of findings.

Practical implications

A framework of adaptive selling strategies is proposed to help tackle new challenges faced by B2B salespeople in today’s information intensive market. When interacting with more informed customers, pre-existing information is often inaccurate and incomplete. Thus, salespeople must assess and address these flaws and gaps and can adapt their influence strategies to do so effectively.

Originality/value

Industrial buyers today have virtually unlimited avenues to conduct extensive research and gain supplier information without the aid of interactions with salespeople. Thus, salespeople often enter sales interactions when their prospects have significantly more information than ever before. By examining salesperson influence techniques in selling situations that vary based on prospective customer preexisting knowledge, this research provides guidance on how selling may need to change in a more information intensive era.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 36 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Article
Publication date: 7 June 2019

Siyu Li, Xiling Cui, Baofeng Huo and Xiande Zhao

The purpose of this paper is to explore the effects that customer structured and unstructured information sharing (IS) can have on customer operational and strategic…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the effects that customer structured and unstructured information sharing (IS) can have on customer operational and strategic coordination and on supply chain performance (SCP). In addition, the study examines how customer IS influences customer coordination under various levels of demand uncertainty (DU).

Design/methodology/approach

The conceptual model for this study is designed on the basis of information-processing theory (IPT). Using data collected from 622 manufacturers in mainland China and Taiwan, the theoretical model is tested using the structural equation modeling method.

Findings

The authors find that both customer structured IS and unstructured IS are positively associated with customer strategic coordination. Customer structured IS increases customer operational coordination, but customer unstructured IS does not. DU positively moderates the relations between customer unstructured IS and strategic coordination, and between customer structured IS and operational coordination. Also, DU negatively moderates the relationship between customer structured IS and strategic coordination. Customer strategic coordination is positively related to SCP and to operational coordination. Customer operational coordination has no significant impact on SCP.

Originality/value

This study deepens our understanding of customer IS by distinguishing between customer structured and unstructured IS. The study also provides a greater understanding of customer coordination by making a distinction between the customer strategic and the operational coordination. The findings extend the empirical application of IPT. In addition, this study’s findings direct SC managers to apply varied customer IS practices that can enhance specific kinds of customer coordination activities, thereby enabling improved SCP.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 119 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Rejikumar G. and Aswathy Asokan A.

Customer satisfaction in a service encounter mainly depends on quality of the service provided. However, technological advancements and higher internet usage rates led to…

Abstract

Purpose

Customer satisfaction in a service encounter mainly depends on quality of the service provided. However, technological advancements and higher internet usage rates led to an over dependence of customers to social media. A research to identify the role played by information in the formation of satisfaction in service encounters is warranted. Thus, this study aims to examine the importance given by customers to various types of information in evaluating a service encounter and attempts to conceptualize the hierarchical process of formation, retention and modification of customer satisfaction under perceived information importance.

Design/methodology/approach

Perceptions of 385 bank customers were collected on their information-seeking behavior (ISB), importance of information on satisfaction, satisfaction modification intentions (SMI) and loyalty using a structured questionnaire. A variance-based structural equation modeling helped to identify significant linkages among variables such as satisfaction developers, satisfaction retainers, satisfaction modifiers, ISB, SMI and information allied loyalty.

Findings

The study could identify three distinct dimensions such as developers, retainers and modifiers for satisfaction construct under perceived importance to information measured using various attributes relevant to a service setting. ISB of customer emerged as an antecedent that cause paradigm changes in satisfaction as well as loyalty feel. The study could also establish that SMI significantly moderates loyalty from satisfaction dimensions even though intensities are different.

Research limitations/implications

Theoretically, this study examined the manner in which information intervenes in the satisfaction–loyalty link, but many predispositions of the customer about service capabilities of the service provider might have critically influenced their modification intentions.

Practical implications

Providing customers with consistent and reliable information is critical to the development of stable satisfaction judgements. Understanding the true impact of information and its role in modifying satisfaction can help marketers to fine tune their strategies for effective relationship management. Now, to remain competitive, firms must constantly analyze the implications of emerging information and the importance customers assign to such information.

Originality/value

This paper helped marketers to identify new areas to focus their attention to ensure lasting customer loyalty.

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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2015

Paramaporn Thaichon and Charles Jebarajakirthy

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of quality perception on customers’ repurchase behaviour in home internet services. Specifically, it was found that…

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1614

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of quality perception on customers’ repurchase behaviour in home internet services. Specifically, it was found that information quality, and privacy affected customers’ commitment and perceived value which were directly related to customer behavioural loyalty.

Design/methodology/approach

In order to achieve the research objectives, a model is proposed. The literature review and formulation of hypotheses related to each construct are then discussed. An online survey was conducted. The final usable sample size was 2,059.

Findings

Information quality was a stronger determinant of commitment and value when compared with privacy. The positive indirect effects of information quality and privacy on behavioural loyalty were also confirmed.

Originality/value

The research provides practical implications which can be used to design effective marketing strategies to retain customers in the residential internet market. Moreover, current issues of high-customer churn rate can be resolved. In general, the study confirms that putting customers’ privacy in the heart of company operations is critical for an internet service provider’s success and long-term sustainability.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2003

Rajesh Singh

For long‐term survival and growth, libraries and information centres need to build, develop and maintain a relationship with their customers. Highlights the shifting…

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3558

Abstract

For long‐term survival and growth, libraries and information centres need to build, develop and maintain a relationship with their customers. Highlights the shifting paradigms that have affected the traditional concept of libraries and attempts to focus the emerging issues that influence the service‐provider and customer relationship. The foremost challenge witnessed by library managers is how to provide easy and quick access to information products and services without compromising service quality while maintaining customer focus at the same time. A relationship marketing approach, initially evolved in Scandinavia, is suggested as a way to build relationships with the customers. Some experiences drawn from a pilot study conducted in Finnish libraries have been interpreted in the framework of a relationship marketing approach. The key issues raised are how relationship marketing principles can contribute to developing relationships with customers in the library and information environment. Stresses that building relationships with customers has become more critical to meet their ever changing various needs, wants, and demands. A list of further reading relating to Scandinavia is appended.

Details

Library Management, vol. 24 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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Article
Publication date: 22 May 2007

Jeff Hoi Yan Yeung, Willem Selen, Zhou Deming and Zhang Min

This research widens the scope of the use of postponement by addressing how the generic supply chain structure and information sharing/relationship among supply chain…

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5162

Abstract

Purpose

This research widens the scope of the use of postponement by addressing how the generic supply chain structure and information sharing/relationship among supply chain actors affects the postponement decision, based on empirical data of Chinese manufacturers in the Pearl River Delta.

Design/methodology/approach

Case analysis, cross‐case comparisons, semi‐structured interviews.

Findings

A cross‐case analysis including study of the downstream structure, downstream relationship, upstream structure, upstream relationship, production method and inventory position produced a postponement classification into five categories: balanced structure without customer information; customer dominated; manufacturer dominated; balanced structure with loose suppliers, and finally virtual supply chain. Based on this classification, two propositions are postulated: when a supply chain has a balanced structure, it should use speculation or production postponement. When the supply chain has an unbalanced structure, it should use purchasing postponement or product development postponement.

Research limitations/implications

This study is exploratory in nature, and more empirical data is needed to further validate the postulated results. Another limitation of the study is in its measurement of postponement, measured in this instance by the production method and inventory positions used. Other characteristics of postponement may be included in future research.

Practical implications

This research has extended the scope of the use of postponement by addressing how the generic supply chain structure and information sharing/relationship among supply chain actors affects the postponement decision.

Originality/value

Addresses postponement on the level of the supply chain, rather than company‐level. Addresses how the supply chain structure (balanced/unbalanced) and information sharing/relationship among supply chain actors affect the postponement decision.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 37 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

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Article
Publication date: 8 August 2016

Abednego Feehi Okoe and Henry Boateng

This paper aims to seek to ascertain the corporate social responsibility (CSR) information needs of customers of microfinance institutions (MFIs). It also ascertains their…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to seek to ascertain the corporate social responsibility (CSR) information needs of customers of microfinance institutions (MFIs). It also ascertains their media preferences for CSR disclosure.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adapted Wilson’s (1981) concept of information needs as the conceptual basis of this study. Case study research design was used. The respondents consisted of customers of MFIs in Ghana. Semi-structured interview was used to collect the data. Data were analysed using thematic analysis technique.

Findings

The study found that the CSR information needs of MFIs’ customers relate to moral disclosure, business survival disclosure, financial and business terms and conditions disclosure, donations disclosure and capacity building and training disclosure. The study also found that family and friends are the most reliable sources of CSR information for MFIs’ customers.

Originality/value

There is a great deal of literature available on CSR disclosure. However, limited studies have investigated the information needs of customers regarding CSR disclosure. Again, CSR disclosure in the Microfinance sector has received limited attention in the existing literature. This study expanded the existing literature by investigating the CSR information needs of MFIs’ customers.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 14 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2001

Ganesh D. Bhatt and Ali F. Emdad

In electronic commerce, businesses require to integrate two kinds of activities – ones that are embedded into the physical value chains and the others that are built…

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9349

Abstract

In electronic commerce, businesses require to integrate two kinds of activities – ones that are embedded into the physical value chains and the others that are built through information into the virtual chain. Although the relative importance of these two kinds of chain depends on the characteristics of the products and services, their integration, nevertheless, plays a critical role in the success of e‐commerce. In e‐commerce, more and more value chain activities are conducted electronically, therefore, businesses should understand the implication of the virtual value chain activities. The virtual chain offers a number of distinct advantages over the physical value chain. Some of these advantages lie in forging alliances between customers and manufacturers, advertising products and services selectively with effects of audio, video, and graphics, and saving time and money in efficiently processing customer orders and enquiries. Besides, e‐commerce offers flexibility in option pricing and customization of products and service, by reducing the constraints of time and space.

Details

Logistics Information Management, vol. 14 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-6053

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