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Title: Out of stock situations as a retail service failure : the role of item importance and service recovery measures : an experimental study of the German grocery retail sector
Author: Spethmann, Patric
ISNI:       0000 0004 5992 366X
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2016
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One of the major advantages of store-based retail formats is the availability of products. The unavailability of products is a major threat for store-based retail formats as out of stock (OOS) situations are considered to be some of the most displeasing occurrences for consumers, resulting in dissatisfaction. As avoiding or recovering from OOS situations are matters of allocating limited resources (e.g. staff, money) wherever they are most effective, this work recommends actions that retailers can take to manage OOS occurrences at store-based retail formats to increase consumer satisfaction. The literature review identifies that OOS research only rarely considers the importance of a product to a consumer. Therefore, this study investigates the effect of the importance of products on consumers’ satisfaction, which, as mentioned above, is the central driver for consumer’s evaluative and behavioural consequences with respect to retailers. Experimental fieldwork was conducted in the German grocery sector, comprising 24 different research scenarios, two products (hedonic/utilitarian), three importance drivers (basic importance [need]/brand loyalty/promotion) and four different retail settings (on-shelf availability [OSA]/OOS with no recovery measure/OOS with basic recovery measure/OOS with recovery-plus measure). By comparing the results of these 24 different research scenarios, this work provides that consumer satisfaction levels correlate significantly with the importance of a product to consumers and that consumer satisfaction levels correlate significantly with consumer reactions to retailers. This study finds that the outcomes to no recovery measures and to applied recovery measures in reaction to OOS occurrences varied between the hedonic and utilitarian settings and by the level of importance of the product to consumers.
Supervisor: Teller, Christoph ; Alexander, Andrew Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.B.A.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available