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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

José Luis Ruiz-Real, Juan Carlos Gázquez-Abad, Irene Esteban-Millat and Francisco J. Martínez-López

The purpose of this paper is to analyze consumers’ reaction to assortment composition.

1026

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze consumers’ reaction to assortment composition.

Design/methodology/approach

This study examines several scenarios: private label (PL)-only assortments; mixed assortments (PL and national brands (NBs)), and in the latter case both small and large assortments. Consumers’ reaction is measured through three dependent variables: store image, PL purchase intention and store-switching intentions. The authors ran a structural equation model (SEM) to analyze the influence of different explanatory aspects (product category involvement, attitude toward PL, value consciousness and assortment variety perception) on consumers’ reactions for each scenario. For this research, the authors carried out an online experiment with a sample of 1,400 individuals from a large panel of consumers.

Findings

Consumers react differently to different assortment compositions, giving importance to the differences between the three assortment models analyzed. The results show that the composition of the assortment, either according to its size or its structure, influences consumers’ response in a significant way. The results demonstrate that store image exclusively affects PL purchase intention in PL-only assortments. Only in mixed assortments is there a relationship between the assortment variety perception and store image, product category involvement and PL purchase intention, and both store image and value consciousness are related to store-switching intentions. Store-switching intentions decrease when consumers intend to purchase PL, but strictly in PL-only and large mixed assortments. Finally, value consciousness and variety perception are positively related to PL purchase intentions only in large mixed assortments.

Research limitations/implications

One limitation of this research is that it is restricted to the Spanish context. Second, the methodology is based on an online experiment, with the advantages and disadvantages that this entails. Third, the authors did not differentiate between high- and low-value PL which, if undertaken, could be of interest for observing how brand value affects the management of retail assortments. Finally, the authors did not differentiate regular buyers at these retail chains from those who are not.

Practical implications

The comparison between different assortment compositions helps the authors to draw some very interesting conclusions. The estimation of different consumers’ responses is ideal for providing retailers with recommendations on how to frame their assortment strategies. Thus, the main recommendation of this study for retailers is to look for a “balance” between PL and NBs, i.e., to offer mixed assortments.

Originality/value

Aside from mixed assortments, this study estimates the consequences of assortments that are exclusively PL. The authors proposed and deployed a SEM, so this paper contributes to the retailing field by including multiple dependent variables – store image, PL purchase intention and store-switching intentions. The authors conducted an online experiment containing “real” brands, which is another contribution as it enables consumers’ response to be estimated in a “real” environment.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 45 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 October 2012

Timucin Ozcan and Daniel A. Sheinin

The aim of this paper is to seek to understand better how consumers judge multiattribute products that are perceived as either more or less complete in terms of feature…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to seek to understand better how consumers judge multiattribute products that are perceived as either more or less complete in terms of feature coverage in a category. Complete products are used to reduce the need of developing and managing expansive and expensive line‐extension portfolios.

Design/methodology/approach

The research used an experimental method and conducted two studies to test hypotheses derived from the marketing literature.

Findings

It is found that more complete multiattribute products are preferred to less complete alternatives. This preference for more complete products remains under larger competitive product assortment, but is reduced under smaller assortment. With a higher price level and larger assortment, the preference is substantial. However, under the conditions of lower price level/larger assortment, higher price level/smaller assortment, and lower price level/smaller assortment, the preference is again reduced.

Research limitations/implications

More positive evaluations and higher product utility accrue from adding new features to multiattribute products prior to purchase. Moreover, more complete information causes more positive evaluations and cognitive responses. Larger assortment strains cognitive resources, and more complete multiattribute products are easier to understand than less complete multiattribute products. This processing facilitation generates positive affect leads to greater use of information that can shorten processing.

Practical implications

Brand managers can have a better understanding of how consumers judge more and less complete products, and under which circumstances more complete products are preferred.

Originality/value

The study of perceived product completeness is novel.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 21 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 July 2012

Timucin Ozcan and Daniel A. Sheinin

The aim of this study is to better understand how consumers understand and judge multi‐attribute products that are perceived as either more or less complete in terms of…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study is to better understand how consumers understand and judge multi‐attribute products that are perceived as either more or less complete in terms of feature coverage in a category. Complete products are used to reduce the need of developing and managing expansive and expensive line‐extension portfolios.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors used an experimental method and conducted two studies to test hypotheses derived from the marketing literature.

Findings

The authors find more complete multi‐attribute products are preferred to less complete alternatives. This preference for more complete products remains under larger competitive product assortment, but is reduced under smaller assortment. With a higher price level and larger assortment, the preference is substantial. However, under the conditions of lower price level/larger assortment, higher price level/smaller assortment, and lower price level/smaller assortment, the preference is again reduced.

Research limitations/implications

More positive evaluations and higher product utility accrue from adding new features to multi‐attribute products prior to purchase. Moreover, more complete information causes more positive evaluations and cognitive responses. Larger assortment strains cognitive resources, and more complete multi‐attribute products are easier to understand than less complete multi‐attribute products. This processing facilitation generates positive affect and leads to greater use of information that can shorten processing. Price level strongly influences processing of more complete products under larger assortment, but not under smaller assortment.

Practical implications

Brand managers have a better understanding of how consumers judge more and less complete products, and under which circumstances more complete products are preferred.

Originality/value

The study of perceived product completeness is novel.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 21 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2004

Johanna Småros and Markus Hellström

The paper presents how a European pick‐and‐mix confectionery company has employed a new forecasting approach – assortment forecasting – to reduce significantly time spent…

4137

Abstract

The paper presents how a European pick‐and‐mix confectionery company has employed a new forecasting approach – assortment forecasting – to reduce significantly time spent on forecasting by working with an entire assortment at a time instead of producing a forecast for each product individually. The implementation of a less time‐consuming forecasting method has enabled the company to involve its salespeople in forecasting and in this way gain access to their product and market knowledge. The case company's implementation of the new forecasting method is described and its forecasting accuracy and time spent on forecasting before and after the implementation are measured. The results demonstrate a remarkable increase in forecasting efficiency as well as improved communication within the company.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 34 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 October 2003

Abdelmajid Amine and Sandrine Cadenat

This research shows that to reach their prime goal of building an efficient assortment, retailers need, beside increasing the outlet’s cost‐efficiency, to evaluate…

5359

Abstract

This research shows that to reach their prime goal of building an efficient assortment, retailers need, beside increasing the outlet’s cost‐efficiency, to evaluate shoppers’ assortment perceptions so that what the store actually offers can be tailored to meet customers’ needs and expectations. Our findings reveal that consumers’ perceptions of the assortment range stems from the combination of few indicators, mainly the number of stock‐keeping units proposed and the availability of the favorite brands. Also demonstrates that consumers evaluation of the overall store assortment draws on the perceived choice within the product categories where they are highly sensitive to the assortment range.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 31 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 December 2019

Chunyu Li, Yongfu He, Ling Peng and Denghua Yuan

Recently, the popularity of store brands has resulted in some manufacturer brands being removed from shelves. The current literature lacks empirical work on the effect of…

Abstract

Purpose

Recently, the popularity of store brands has resulted in some manufacturer brands being removed from shelves. The current literature lacks empirical work on the effect of manufacturer brand erosion on consumer assortment perception and repatronage intention. Based on signalling theory, the purpose of this paper is to manufacturer brands play a signalling role and contend that manufacturer brand erosion has detrimental effects on the assortment perception due to reduced signalling efficacy.

Design/methodology/approach

A 3 (low manufacturer brand erosion vs high manufacturer brand erosion vs manufacturer brand dominance) ×2 (assortment size: small vs large) between-subject experiment was conducted.

Findings

Manufacturer brand erosion exerts a negative effect on assortment attractiveness and consumers’ repatronage intention; the greater the erosion, the larger the negative effect. These negative effects are mediated by reduced consumer perceptions of assortment quality and variety. A large (vs small) assortment size attenuates the negative effect of manufacturer brand erosion by improving perceived assortment quality.

Practical implications

To engage in strategic positioning through efficient assortment management, retailers should cooperate with brand manufacturers, instead of promoting their own private labels. Nevertheless, a large assortment dominated by store brands signals that the retailer has built a strong private brand, which in turn gains a differentiation advantage.

Originality/value

This paper is among the first to take the signalling perspective and explicitly investigate whether and how manufacturer brand erosion exerts a significant impact on assortment perception.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

Yolande Piris and Nathalie Guibert

This paper aims to apply intuition theory to clarify consumers’ assortment evaluations. For each decision process, this paper explores how perceptions of organization and…

1026

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to apply intuition theory to clarify consumers’ assortment evaluations. For each decision process, this paper explores how perceptions of organization and variety influence consumers’ attitudes and purchase intentions.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 504 observations were collected across three product categories. Perceived choice, time and expertise in the product category provide proxies to distinguish between intuitive and deliberative systems. The intuitive system further consists of intuition based on either expertise or heuristics.

Findings

It was revealed that distinct decision processes (deliberative, intuitive based on expertise and intuitive based on heuristics) affect the link between assortment perceptions and consumers’ assortment evaluations. Consumers’ evaluations in deliberative- and heuristic-based intuitive systems rely more on perceptions of organization than of variety; whereas intuitive judgments based on expertise depend almost equally on both perceptions.

Research limitations/implications

Some limitations have to be underlined. The approximations used could be more precise and are subjective in nature. Moreover, the ordinary product categories that were studied might encourage more intuitive decisions by consumers. If so, the deliberative mode of thinking might have been underrepresented in this sample.

Originality/value

Despite the limitations, this research is, to our knowledge, the first to explore the influence of intuition theory on ordinary shopping and in particular on assortment perception. As such, it contributes to a deeper understanding of this theory in the field.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 May 2019

Pradeep Kautish and Rajesh Sharma

The purpose of this paper is to bridge together seemingly disparate yet interconnected paradigmatic antecedents of e-tailing and servicescape, i.e., product assortment

1457

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to bridge together seemingly disparate yet interconnected paradigmatic antecedents of e-tailing and servicescape, i.e., product assortment, order fulfillment, shopping assistance and its consequences for shopping efficiency.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed conceptual model is well grounded in the extensive literature from e-tailing as well as retailing domain and to assess the plausibility of the model. Total 246 female online apparel shoppers were surveyed from an Indian university and the data were analyzed using structural equation modeling through SmartPLS.

Findings

The outcomes of the study indicate that the e-customer may derive a substantial share of shopping assistance and service interface through product assortment offered by e-tailing sites. Customer-perceived performance of this e-shopping process – a crucial element of e-tail servicescape – directly affects the shopping assistance, along with order fulfillment capability of retail scope.

Research limitations/implications

The study used a sample of graduate students at a north-west university in India, which limits the generalizability of the research to other consumer groups. The paper links a significant body of literature within a conceptually developed framework and identifies key research areas in the e-tailing realm.

Practical implications

By better understanding the role of product assortment as a value-added feature in online value co-creation process, the e-tail managers can leverage the proposed integrated capability to improve e-tailing performance and customer outcomes in the form of business.

Social implications

With rapid advancements in internet-led communication, we are witnessing the dawn of a new era of e-tail innovations around us which is expected to change the way people experience shopping.

Originality/value

This research is an attempt to enrich the level of understanding about online shopping environment in light of relationships among virtual and physical facets of e-tail, i.e., product assortment, order fulfillment, shopping assistance and shopping efficiency. The authors investigate customer-perceived product assortment performance in e-tailing and its significances on shopping outcomes.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 January 2012

Mayukh Dass and Piyush Kumar

A critical issue faced by retailers is determining the composition of the product assortment in every category and setting the price levels for each product without…

1659

Abstract

Purpose

A critical issue faced by retailers is determining the composition of the product assortment in every category and setting the price levels for each product without compromising category‐level customer demand or operational efficiency. The purpose of this paper is to propose a novel, model‐based clustering approach to bring parsimony to retailers' assortment configuration and pricing process. The objective of the model is to group alternative assortment configurations into sets to which the category exhibits equivalent vulnerability.

Design/methodology/approach

In this method, each possible assortment and pricing configuration is first conceptualized as a unified entity and then these entities are clustered based on the vulnerability of category level sales. The authors illustrate the benefits of this new method for category planning using two sets of data for brands of soft drinks and enhanced water, collected from a panel of adult customers.

Findings

The results from both data sets show that several assortment configurations, varying significantly in terms of numbers of products and prices, result in similar levels of category vulnerability. In other words, several widely‐different product‐pricing combinations result in similar levels of category demand.

Originality/value

The paper's findings imply that retailers can bring parsimony to their category management process by shifting their strategic focus from individual brands to assortment clusters. Specifically, they can select the most efficient or the smallest assortment from each cluster without sacrificing category demand. Overall, the authors' approach can help simplify the complex decision‐making process related to product selection and price setting, and help retailers achieve the dual objective of operational efficiency and high category demand.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 40 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Alexander Hübner

Because increasing product variety in retail conflicts with limited shelf space, managing assortment and shelf quantities is a core decision in this sector. A retailer…

1671

Abstract

Purpose

Because increasing product variety in retail conflicts with limited shelf space, managing assortment and shelf quantities is a core decision in this sector. A retailer needs to define the assortment size and then assign shelf space to meet consumer demand. However, the current literature lacks not only information on the comprehensive structure of the decision problem, but also a decision support system that can be directly applied to practice in a straightforward manner. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The findings were developed and evaluated by means of explorative interviews with grocery retail experts. An optimization model is proposed to solve the problem of assortment planning with limited shelf space for data sets of a size relevant in real retail practice.

Findings

The author identifies the underlying planning problems based on a qualitative survey of retailers and relates the problems to each other. This paper develops a pragmatic approach to the capacitated assortment problem with stochastic demand and substitution effects. The numerical examples reveal that substitution demand has a significant impact on total profit and solution structure.

Practical implications

The author shows that the model and solution approach are scalable to problem sizes relevant in practice. Furthermore, the planning architecture structures the related planning questions and forms a foundation for further research on decision support systems.

Originality/value

The planning framework structures the associated decision problems in assortment planning. An efficient solution approach for assortment planning is proposed.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 45 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 4000