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Revisiting the role of relationship benefits in online retail

Revisiting the role of relationship benefits in online retail Given the importance of relationship benefits in creating customer satisfaction, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the moderating role of relationship benefits (special treatment benefits and confidence benefits) on relationship quality and word of mouth (WOM) for online retailers. The conditional mediating role of relationship quality between customer satisfaction and WOM is also examined.Design/methodology/approachA sample of 700 MBA students from two universities in Punjab (North India) has been used to collect data. Structural equation modelling and PROCESS Macro (Hayes (2017) have been used for data analysis (mod mod mediation).FindingsWhen customers perceive high confidence benefits, special treatment benefits moderate the mediational role of relationship quality between customer satisfaction and WOM. Specific conditions under which use of confidence benefits and special treatment benefits are successful for online retailers have also been identified.Practical implicationsTailored use of special treatment benefits with confidence benefits in appropriate combinations will help the online retailers in segmenting the customers and differentiating amongst them according to the customers’ receptivity towards these benefits. Marketers can devise communication strategies, create customer segments and position their services using the results obtained in the study.Originality/valueThe present study is the first of its kind which clarifies as to why the previous literature considered special treatment benefits as less relevant to customers. It also establishes the situations in which these benefits successfully moderate the effect of customer satisfaction in developing relationship quality and eliciting positive WOM in the Indian internet retailing context. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Marketing Intelligence & Planning Emerald Publishing

Revisiting the role of relationship benefits in online retail

Marketing Intelligence & Planning , Volume 38 (6): 15 – Aug 18, 2020

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
0263-4503
DOI
10.1108/mip-03-2019-0186
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Given the importance of relationship benefits in creating customer satisfaction, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the moderating role of relationship benefits (special treatment benefits and confidence benefits) on relationship quality and word of mouth (WOM) for online retailers. The conditional mediating role of relationship quality between customer satisfaction and WOM is also examined.Design/methodology/approachA sample of 700 MBA students from two universities in Punjab (North India) has been used to collect data. Structural equation modelling and PROCESS Macro (Hayes (2017) have been used for data analysis (mod mod mediation).FindingsWhen customers perceive high confidence benefits, special treatment benefits moderate the mediational role of relationship quality between customer satisfaction and WOM. Specific conditions under which use of confidence benefits and special treatment benefits are successful for online retailers have also been identified.Practical implicationsTailored use of special treatment benefits with confidence benefits in appropriate combinations will help the online retailers in segmenting the customers and differentiating amongst them according to the customers’ receptivity towards these benefits. Marketers can devise communication strategies, create customer segments and position their services using the results obtained in the study.Originality/valueThe present study is the first of its kind which clarifies as to why the previous literature considered special treatment benefits as less relevant to customers. It also establishes the situations in which these benefits successfully moderate the effect of customer satisfaction in developing relationship quality and eliciting positive WOM in the Indian internet retailing context.

Journal

Marketing Intelligence & PlanningEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 18, 2020

Keywords: Relationship quality; Relationship benefits; Confidence benefits; Mod mod mediation; Special treatment benefits

References