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Web atmospherics as drivers of shopping centres’ customer loyalty

Web atmospherics as drivers of shopping centres’ customer loyalty The purpose of this paper is to analyse whether and how the website atmosphere (WA) of a shopping centre affects the behavioural loyalty of customers towards physical shopping centres. A mediating variable – individual shopper motivation – is considered in assessing this relationship.Design/methodology/approachThe research hypotheses were tested using a partial least squares – path modelling approach to structural equation modelling on a sample population of 438 individuals.FindingsOnline atmospherics, particularly concerning the social/relational attributes of the WA, positively affect the behavioural loyalty of customers towards physical shopping centres. Moreover, recreational motivations strengthen this relationship more than functional motivations do.Research limitations/implicationsThe sample investigated is limited with regard to diversity, age and gender. Future research can use a more representative sample to improve the findings’ relevance and generalisation. Also the development of a scale of measures for the shopping centre customers’ motivations is worthy of interest in future studies.Practical implicationsRecognising the importance of web atmospherics’ significant impact on customer loyalty should encourage shopping centre managers to develop effective website and online communication programmes.Originality/valueExtant studies have paid little attention to the relationship between WA and customer loyalty to the physical shopping centre. This study investigates this relationship, combining the online and offline perspective into an overall research approach. Moreover, it contributes to the research on website management in the shopping centre context by providing a comprehensive analysis of WA, whereas previous studies have mainly focussed on one or a few atmospherics. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management Emerald Publishing

Web atmospherics as drivers of shopping centres’ customer loyalty

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References (167)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
0959-0552
DOI
10.1108/ijrdm-07-2016-0120
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to analyse whether and how the website atmosphere (WA) of a shopping centre affects the behavioural loyalty of customers towards physical shopping centres. A mediating variable – individual shopper motivation – is considered in assessing this relationship.Design/methodology/approachThe research hypotheses were tested using a partial least squares – path modelling approach to structural equation modelling on a sample population of 438 individuals.FindingsOnline atmospherics, particularly concerning the social/relational attributes of the WA, positively affect the behavioural loyalty of customers towards physical shopping centres. Moreover, recreational motivations strengthen this relationship more than functional motivations do.Research limitations/implicationsThe sample investigated is limited with regard to diversity, age and gender. Future research can use a more representative sample to improve the findings’ relevance and generalisation. Also the development of a scale of measures for the shopping centre customers’ motivations is worthy of interest in future studies.Practical implicationsRecognising the importance of web atmospherics’ significant impact on customer loyalty should encourage shopping centre managers to develop effective website and online communication programmes.Originality/valueExtant studies have paid little attention to the relationship between WA and customer loyalty to the physical shopping centre. This study investigates this relationship, combining the online and offline perspective into an overall research approach. Moreover, it contributes to the research on website management in the shopping centre context by providing a comprehensive analysis of WA, whereas previous studies have mainly focussed on one or a few atmospherics.

Journal

International Journal of Retail & Distribution ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Nov 22, 2017

Keywords: Customer loyalty; Shopping centre; Shopping motivation; Website atmosphere

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