Consumers attitudes towards fast food restaurants in Greece : an investigation of store image, satisfaction and loyalty
This study deals with the investigation of store image for fast food restaurants in Greece. Understanding factors that influence consumer behaviour is of critical importance for marketing managers of the restaurants under investigation. Image has had a long history in the study of marketing, and as a concept, is one of the cornerstones of consumer behaviour theory. The first research objective was to develop a customized store image scale for fast food restaurants in order to identify key image dimensions and their relative importance in determining consumer choice. An eight-stage process, based on Churchill's (1979), model, guided the development, validation and refinement of the scale. The primary instrument was developed from an extensive literature review and qualitative research. A quantitative survey with a sample of three hundred participants, followed. A seven-factor, 24-item measure was extracted from the purification process. The psychometric properties of the scale were re-evaluated through a second stage analysis with new data collected for the study. The final structure of the scale included six factors consisting of 14 items. The factors were labelled as: a) Adaptation to Locality b) Service c) Facilities d) Food quality e) Place to be and g) Sales incentive program. The scale's reliability, content and criterion validity was established. The construct validity of the scale was evaluated using a number of multivariate methods. The results showed that the scale has adequate construct validity. Much of the work in the marketing area emphasises the implications of image for purchasing behaviour. So, the next stage of the study was the exploration of the complex relationship between perceived store image satisfaction and loyalty using structural equation modelling. The results show that there is both a direct and indirect relationship between store image and loyalty whereby satisfaction acts as mediator. The knowledge and understanding of the underlying factors of store image would be a great help both for academic and commercial reasons. Moreover, the investigation of the complex relationship between store image customer satisfaction and loyalty would be a key tool for strategic marketing planning and implementation.