Evaluation of customer’s mall
preferences in India using fuzzy
Indian Institute of Management Ranchi, Ranchi, Jharkhand, India
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to develop a structured model to understand mall preferences
among Indian customers.
Design/methodology/approach – The present study uses fuzzy analytical hierarchy processing
(FAHP). Use of Fuzzy Logic will provide a more reliable solution since it is capable of handling
vagueness and uncertainty in the database.
Findings – Findings of the study suggest that the most preferred value that determines mall
preference by Indian customers is HV, followed by SV, contrary to the stereotype that Indian customers
are price sensitive. Forum mall is the best mall in terms of HV and SV, which motivates customers to
shop at a particular mall.
Practical implications – The study will be useful for managers and academicians. The study will
help managers develop a better understanding of customer’s mall preferences and identify their own
strengths and weaknesses. Based on this, they can devise strategies to maximize strengths by
Originality/value – Most of the work on FAHP is dedicated to either vendor selection or supplier
selection. A study of this kind, in the context of mall preference among Indian customers is an original
contribution to the literature of Indian retailing.
Keywords FAHP, Mall, Customer, India, Retailing, Retail management, Consumer behaviour
Paper type Research paper
The Indian economy grew with a GDP rate of 7.8 percent in the year 2011. India’s retail
sector has also grown parallel to the US$435 billion retail market of which 7 percent is
organized and the remaining 93 percent of the retail sector in India is still unorganized
(Asipac, 2010). Big-box retail has gained prominence with malls and hypermarkets in
India. Food remains the sunshine sector of Indian retail. A modern format is rapidly
growing at the rate of 40-44 percent (India Retail Report, 2009). Some of the prominent
factors that propelled the growth of Indian retail sectors are favorable demographics,
retail estate boom and rising income levels. India has the largest population of young
people in the world with 65 percent of the total population under the age of 35. An
important factor attracting customers toward modern retailing mechanisms is the
youthful exuberance and shopping experience which is preferred most by the youths
(KS Oils, 2008).
The average gross lettable area of the top 18 operational malls in India is 590,800
square feet. The regional break-up of India shows that seven out of 18 malls are in the
north, six are in the west, four are in the south and one is in the east. The newly opened
Mantri Square at Bangalore is the largest operational mall in the country followed by
the Ambience mall in Gurgaon. R City Ghatkopar in Mumbai is the largest mall in
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The author acknowledges the review and support provided by the Editors of the Journal.