Assessing Grocery Store Attraction via Cross-Shopping Linkages – Perspectives on Cross-shopping Behavior

The cross-shopping literature suggests there are two perspectives by which cross-shopping behavior can be studied. The most common perspective is consumer oriented. Consumers are asked to identify which stores they patronize and the frequency of visits. Measurements of switching and patronage ratios are then developed to identify a consumer’s likelihood of cross-shopping. A second perspective takes a store perspective and identifies the store’s likelihood of being cross-shopped by consumers. This approach is referenced in the research by Morgansky, Lord and Bodkin, and Bodkin and Lord.
Morgansky examined patronage behaviors across (inter-type) retail channels. Of particular interest to the current study is the discussion of channel push and pull which describes cross-shopping as the extent to which a “channel is able to pull in or attract customers from each of the other channels”. Morgansky measured the degree to which retail formats are more likely to push (i.e., share) customers to other retail formats or the degree to which one retail format can pull (i.e, attract) customers from other retail formats. It was found that supercentres share 95% of their customers with supermarkets and attract 77% of their customers from limited-line discount stores.
Research conducted by Lord and Bodkin and Bodkin and Lord also used the store perspective of cross-shopping across (inter-type) retail formats. In their study of retail stores within a shopping center, they developed sender (i.e., sharing) and receiver (i.e., attraction) ratios which were used as the basis for identifying stores that were more likely to demonstrate cross-shopping behavior. They found cross-shopping was driven by distance between stores, store compatibility, and store size.
While previous research demonstrated that store linkages provide a measure of cross-shopping behavior, none of the previous research examined consumers’ perceptions of private label brands and service quality associated with stores that are more likely to share customers (i.e., being a push or sender store) versus stores that are more likely to receive customers (i.e., being a pull or receiver store).
Research Problem
This study will provide a better understanding of the retail market structure for grocery stores (intra-type) by providing an assessment of the cross-shopping linkages. While beliefs regarding private label brands and service quality have been identified as key factors of store loyalty; their influence on cross-shopping as a store characteristic has not been addressed in the literature. Once cross-shopping patterns have been identified, this study will examine consumer perceptions associated with the store characteristic of cross-shopping.

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