Store Image Trends

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Businesses strive for creating, maintaining and improving customer loyalty of their brands (Dick & Basu, 1994). Loyal consumers buy a brand repeatedly and their brand switching tendency is relatively low and hence brand loyalty contributes significantly towards a firm’s competitive advantage. Hence, brand equity will increase corresponding to an increase in brand loyalty. This has been reinforced by Aaker (1992) who suggested that increased brand loyalty leads to increased brand equity and hence improved profitability for the firm. Due to increasing marketing costs, it is becoming expensive to acquire new customers. Brand loyal consumers therefore act as an asset by increasing a firm’s market share and its returns on investment thus improving…show more content…
The personality of a retail store or chain will depend on the experiences of customers with the stores (Kunkel and Berry,1968;Aaker,1997).
Concept of Store Image: Martineau (1958) is generally recognized as one of the first researcher to introduce the store image concept as a key differentiation factor. His definition of store image considers both the functional & psychological attributes which define a store in customers’ mind. The functional attributes include assortment which can be compared by consumers with other similar stores (e.g. commodities, store layout, store location, price-value relation, and store service). Psychological attributes include non functional attributes e.g. the attractiveness, ambience & comfort of a particular
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Zimmer and Golden (1988) further proposed that store image includes total dimensions of store attributes felt by consumers. Berman and Evans (1995) have proposed that store image is composed of different functional as well as emotional attributes which are arranged in consumers’ perceptual structures. The formation of these structures depends up on consumers’ expectations about overall policies and their executions by a particular retailer. Further store attributes have different meanings for a customer. Various characteristics of a store e.g. its physical ambience, service standards, and merchandise quality describe the image of a store (Zimmer and Golden,

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