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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2001

Deborah Fowler and Richard Clodfelter

Past research has shown that consumers believe there is a strong relationship between price and quality; they also believe there is a strong relationship between brand and…

Abstract

Past research has shown that consumers believe there is a strong relationship between price and quality; they also believe there is a strong relationship between brand and quality. Therefore, when comparing similar pieces of apparel, items with a designer brand or a higher price are perceived, by most customers, to be of higher quality. The purpose of this study was to compare the pricing and quality of identical designer merchandise sold in department stores and manufacturers’ outlet stores. The researchers found no significant differences in the quality of apparel sold in the two retail formats; however, there was a significant difference in the price. The department store merchandise was 31 per cent higher in price than the outlet store merchandise.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

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Article
Publication date: 10 October 2008

Yan Lu and Yoo‐Kyoung Seock

The purpose of this study is to identify grey consumers' perceived service quality at department stores and to examine the relationships between perceived service quality…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to identify grey consumers' perceived service quality at department stores and to examine the relationships between perceived service quality, their satisfaction and loyalty to those stores.

Design/methodology/approach

A structured questionnaire was developed to collect the data. Factor analysis was employed to identify dimensions of grey consumers' perceived service quality. Multiple regression analyses were conducted to examine the relationships between grey consumers' perceived service quality at department stores and their satisfaction and loyalty behaviors at those stores.

Findings

Three service quality dimensions were identified. The results showed that all three service quality dimensions in the study were significantly and positively related to their satisfaction at their favorite department stores and overall loyalty behavior to those stores. Among three service quality dimensions, personal interaction was the strongest predictor of both grey consumers' satisfaction and overall loyalty behavior. Personal interaction was identified as the most significant factor for promoting positive word of mouth and store image for repeat purchase intention.

Practical implications

With this study, department stores' managers would be able to better understand grey consumers and thereby take advantage of the potential purchasing opportunities of this powerful consumer market. This study also may contribute to the department stores' management in allocating their resources to improve service in a more effective way to satisfy grey consumers.

Originality/value

Despite the increasing purchasing potential this powerful market has created, grey consumers' shopping behavior is under‐researched and their needs are still unmet in the market place.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 36 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 19 January 2010

Vicki Howard

Focusing on the early development of the three major forms of local advertising employed by independent department stores across the USA – newspapers, radio, and…

Abstract

Purpose

Focusing on the early development of the three major forms of local advertising employed by independent department stores across the USA – newspapers, radio, and television – this paper examines continuity in the industry's commercial use of new technologies.

Design/methodology/approach

The research draws on different types of primary sources, including department store financial records and correspondence, retailing trade literature, industry publications, newspaper advertisements, and radio advertisement transcripts.

Findings

The local and regional markets of the independent department store, and to some extent, department store chains, required local advertising, something best served by newspapers in the period under study. While many retailers embrace the commercial potential of radio and television as they appear in the 1920s and late 1930s, respectively, others are reluctant to divert their advertising budget away from newspapers. Trade writers for the department store industry and radio and television reveal tension between the National Retail Dry Goods Association, with its progressive orientation and professionalizing goals, and the more traditional merchants these experts are trying to modernize. The paper also suggests, perhaps as a subject for future research, that as radio and television lost their local orientation and became increasingly commercialized and national, independent department store advertising would not have been able to compete with department store chains.

Originality/value

Although much has been written about national advertising, cultural, and business historians have conducted little research on local advertising, the type typically employed by independent department stores. This paper provides an introduction to the three major advertising formats most often used by independent department stores as each medium first emerged as a potential selling tool.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article
Publication date: 2 October 2019

Susan Krug Friedman

Over the years, department stores have dealt with unique challenges, including massive changes in city and then suburban landscapes and shopping patterns, shifts in…

Abstract

Purpose

Over the years, department stores have dealt with unique challenges, including massive changes in city and then suburban landscapes and shopping patterns, shifts in consumer preferences, and, more recently, electronic commerce. The purpose of this paper is to discuss additional community-oriented marketing approaches for department stores.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach looks at the role of traditional department stores in communities and their economic impact and uses ideas from a variety of community-based mobile services, including medical, food and library outreach.

Findings

The findings are that the importance of physical retailers such as department stores to a community deserves further consideration by civic and business leaders and that a variety of services and products have been successfully marketed in communities through additional approaches such as mobile units.

Social implications

The approaches presented could enhance community development.

Originality/value

While department stores have held distinctive places in many cities, these enterprises lack the type of regional fan base that advocates actively for other kinds of industries. A community-oriented marketing approach for department stores is discussed, with ideas for future research that could build on these stores’ special brand attributes and on their contributions to the viability of an area.

Details

American Journal of Business, vol. 34 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1935-5181

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1993

Li Dong Chang and Brenda Sternquist

Traces history of Taiwan′s department store industry back to 1958when Da‐Hsin, Taiwan′s first contemporary department store, wasestablished in Kao‐Hsiung. Most of Taiwan′s…

Abstract

Traces history of Taiwan′s department store industry back to 1958 when Da‐Hsin, Taiwan′s first contemporary department store, was established in Kao‐Hsiung. Most of Taiwan′s department stores were small with limited cash flow and have, therefore, widely adopted consignment sales. Illustrates how lack of merchandise differentation, stemming from consignment, resulted in a serious problem with vicious price competition. As a result, the Taipei Co‐ordinated Department Store Association (TCDSA) was formed in 1980 by volunteer department stores as a way to alleviate devastating price competition between them. Details how, recently, collaborative agreements have attracted the attention of Taiwan′s department stores; and how these strategic alliances have advanced Taiwan′s department store industry and have offered foreign retailers entry into the Taiwanese market.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 21 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 31 October 2008

Ravi Pappu and Pascale G. Quester

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether retailer brand equity levels vary between department store and specialty clothing store categories.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether retailer brand equity levels vary between department store and specialty clothing store categories.

Design/methodology/approach

Retailer brand equity is conceptualized in this paper as a four‐dimensional construct comprising retailer awareness, retailer associations, retailer perceived quality and retailer loyalty. Categorization theory is used to explain the differences in retailer equity across the two different store categories. A doubly multivariate design is incorporated in a structured questionnaire used to collect data via mall‐intercepts in an Australian state capital city.

Findings

Results suggest that retailer brand equity varies significantly between department store and specialty store categories. Department store brands yielded significantly higher ratings for all the retailer brand equity dimensions than specialty store brands.

Originality/value

Researchers have argued that retailers possess brand equity. However, extant research does not provide any specific guidance in relation to the question of whether retailer brand equity levels vary from one store category to another. The present research fills an important gap by demonstrating that retailer brand equity levels vary significantly between department store and specialty clothing store categories.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 17 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Article
Publication date: 18 March 2021

Mohammadbagher Gorji, Louise Grimmer, Martin Grimmer and Sahar Siami

The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of physical and social retail store environment, referred to as “storescape”, retail store attachment and employee…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of physical and social retail store environment, referred to as “storescape”, retail store attachment and employee citizenship behaviour towards customers on customer citizenship behaviour.

Design/methodology/approach

The research employed a descriptive quantitative, cross-sectional design with a self-administered survey. Data were collected through an online research panel provider from 415 customers of department and discount department stores in Australia.

Findings

The findings show social storescape predicts customer citizenship behaviour directly, and that store attachment mediates the effect of both physical and social storescape on this behaviour. Employee citizenship behaviour towards customers was found to moderate the effect of storescape on customer citizenship behaviour. In addition, the effect of both positive physical and social storescape was found to be greater in discount department stores than department stores.

Practical implications

In addition to highlighting the factors that drive customer citizenship behaviour, the study shows that storescape factors and their effect vary for department stores versus discount department stores.

Originality/value

This study shows the effect of storescape on customer citizenship behaviour. Drawing on resource exchange theory, this study is the first-known to identify storescape as both physical and social resources which can influence retail store attachment and customer citizenship behaviour. The study provides new insights into the differential effect of storescape in department versus discount department stores in motivating customers to engage in citizenship behaviour. Further, the study makes an important contribution by demonstrating the moderating role of employee citizenship behaviour towards customers.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 49 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1992

Roy Larke

The Japanese retail environment is of interest to businessmen,politicians and academics. Different observers tend to base their viewson their own vested interests and…

Abstract

The Japanese retail environment is of interest to businessmen, politicians and academics. Different observers tend to base their views on their own vested interests and national expectations, Japanese observers included. There is a need for more objective, unbiased research into Japanese retailing, consumer behaviour and marketing. Presents an overview of Japanese retailing employing predominantly Japanese language sources. Outlines briefly the general structure of the retail industry, emphasizing the large number of outlets overall. Considers the independent retail sector, notably the existence of street associations, and the corporate retail sector, putting emphasis on the latter owing to the lack of information available in English. Considers three forms of corporate retailing in detail, namely department stores, general merchandise stores and groups, and speciality shopping centres – commonly known as “fashion buildings”. In conclusion, notes that there is great scope for further research into Japanese retailing, and three general sectors are suggested.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2018

Eunyoung (Christine) Sung and Patricia Huddleston

This paper explores the antecedents and consequences of consumers’ need for self-image congruence on their retail patronage of department (high-end) and discount (low-end…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper explores the antecedents and consequences of consumers’ need for self-image congruence on their retail patronage of department (high-end) and discount (low-end) stores to purchase name-brand products in two product categories, apparel and home décor. It also compared online to offline shopping and considered two mediator variables, frugality and materialism.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper analyzed the hypothesized relationships using structural equation modeling (SEM) and MANOVA. Study 1 suggested the model using secondary data, and Study 2 measured and confirmed the relationships using scenario-based online survey data. An MANOVA test was used to compare the shopping behavior of consumers with high and low need for self-image congruence.

Findings

A strong causal link was found between concern with appearance and need for self-image congruence, and a positive relationship between need for self-image congruence and high- and low-end retail store patronage offline and online. While the group with high (vs low) need for self-image congruence was more likely to patronize department stores, unexpectedly, both the high and low self-image congruence groups were equally likely to shop at discount stores.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that marketing messages focusing on concern for appearance may succeed by tapping into consumers’ need for self-image congruence with brand product/retail store images. Results also showed that consumers with high self-image congruence often patronize discount retail stores, suggesting marketing opportunities for low-end retailers.

Originality/value

Because consumers with high need for self-image congruence patronize both department and discount stores, it is suggested that self-image congruity may be multi-dimensional. The current study is also the first to examine structural relationships to test patronage behavior between department and discount stores offline and online.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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Article
Publication date: 19 January 2010

Beth Kreydatus

The purpose of this paper is to explore the experiences of a significant group of retail employees, specifically the African‐American operations and service workers that…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the experiences of a significant group of retail employees, specifically the African‐American operations and service workers that worked behind the scenes in department stores during the Jim Crow era, defined here as 1890‐1965.

Design/methodology/approach

Department stores have rightly occupied a prominent place in business historiography. This wealth of scholarship can be explained partly by substantial archival resources, but especially by department stores' significance to US business, cultural, and social history. Yet, despite this rich historiography, a significant number of department store employees have been overlooked, and this omission has distorted the picture of the work culture and marketing strategies of these massive and influential retail institutions. Department stores employ a large number of operations and service staff, such as delivery people, housekeeping and maintenance workers, elevator operators, stock workers, packers, and warehouse workers. These positions make up roughly one‐fifth of all department store work. This paper presents a close study of the two most prominent department stores of early and mid‐twentieth century Richmond, Virginia – Thalhimers and Miller & Rhoads – to offer insight into the work culture and workplace experiences of these employees.

Findings

Ultimately, this paper shows that African‐American employees played an important role in the maintenance and image of Richmond department stores. Store managers place high demands for “loyalty” and “faithfulness” on their black staff to demonstrate their lavish services to the buying public. For black employees, this means that the work environment can be highly stressful, as they seek to meet competing demands from customers and co‐workers. However, department store work offers opportunities, in particular, steady employment among a close network of African‐American coworkers. Finally, the presence of segregated black employees undermines managements' attempts to convey their workforce as one “happy family.”

Research limitations/implications

The research is entirely based on two high‐end department stores, Miller & Rhoads and Thalhimers, both based in Richmond, Virginia. Two store archives – available at the Valentine Richmond History Center and the Virginia Historical Society – are the primary resources for this project. Because, the papers in these archives are donated by store managers, a limitation to this study is the dearth of unmediated voices of the employees themselves.

Originality/value

This research adds to the historiography of department stores by shedding light on employees who are expected by employers to remain nearly invisible in their jobs, and unfortunately, have been fairly invisible in the historical record as well.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

Keywords

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