The Stability of Retail Shopping Choices Over Time and Across Countries

Elsevier Science
Publication Type:
Journal Article
The Journal of Retailing, 2001, 77 (2), pp. 185 - 202
Issue Date:
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The aggressive, geographic market expansion of successful retail organizations, the development of a global consumer market and the spatial diffusion of retail innovations led us to investigate the extent to which models helping managers to make strategic decisions can be generalized across time and place. To the extent that such generalization can occur, it would reduce the redundancy of research and associated costs for making decisions in major retail organizations. This article makes use of relatively recent developments in random utility theory to assess the stability over time and space of the preferences underlying retail-shopping choice. Data collected three times over four years in Canada are used to compare models of shopping center choice based on perceived center attributes. We hypothesize that random component variance differences are the likely source of observed differences in retailing preferences. Two waves of panel data for supermarket choice are used to assess our ability to generalize to another choice process. Data for shopping center choice collected in Canada, U.S.A., and Norway are used to assess spatial stability. The test results support the hypothesis for the spatial consistency of preferences. The test of stability over time shows no difference at all in retailing preferences, both the random component variances and the coefficients were unchanged over the four-year period studied.
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