This paper studies the effect of the value-creating functions on satisfaction and loyalty in business markets. The conceptual framework that depicts a direct effect of the manufacturer’s value-creating functions on the distributor’s satisfaction and loyalty also considers the existence of quadratic effects between satisfaction and loyalty. We used polychoric correlations (Br J Math Stat Psychol 48:339–358, 1995), together with a robust methodological approach, to analyze categorical variables under structural equation modeling (SEM) in EQS. The empirical results are based on a sample of 181 manufacturing companies located in Spain. By using the aforementioned efficient analytical procedure, the results provide strong empirical support that value creation, understood from a functionalist perspective, is an antecedent of satisfaction and loyalty in business-to-business contexts. Distributor satisfaction is significantly affected by the benefit, volume, and safeguard functions, and the indirect value-creating functions performed by the manufacturer. Distributor loyalty is directly influenced by the indirect value-creating functions, but there is no confirmation that the benefit, volume, and safeguard functions do so. Finally, distributor satisfaction does not exert any significant quadratic effect on distributor loyalty but it has a direct linear effect on that variable.
Quality & Quantity – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 1, 2011
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