کیفیت خدمات سوپر مارکت خود پرداخت ، رضایت مشتری و تعهد: شواهد تجربی از بازار نوظهور
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|13614||2014||12 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Volume 21, Issue 2, March 2014, Pages 118–129
Supermarket shoppers around the world are increasingly encountering and using self-service technologies (SSTs) during their shopping process. The SSTs are mainly offered to reduce retailer costs and enhance customer's experience. Among the many different SSTs available, self-checkout systems (SCS) have become an extremely popular choice of supermarkets around the world. Although some of the main motivations of the supermarkets for offering SCSs are cost cutting, speed, and convenience, supermarkets are also assuming that these services would enhance customer experience, satisfaction, and ultimately loyalty. However, empirical evidence is needed to better understand customer expectations of SCS service quality and how technology based service quality impacts retail patronage. Therefore, the purpose of this research is to examine the service quality of supermarket/grocery store SCSs and its impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty in an emerging market, namely Turkey. Using the SSTQUAL scale (Lin and Hsieh, 2011), data (n=275) for the study is collected from shoppers who had just completed going through the self-checkout counter in a large supermarket chain. The results of this study show that SCS service quality positively influences loyalty through the customer satisfaction path. Managerial and research implications of the findings are discussed.
Rapid advances in technology are significantly influencing how retailers deliver their functions and stay competitive in the globalized markets. These technological advancements are dramatically altering the way consumers interact with retailers and how retailers communicate with their customers. To reduce cost, increase value, and improve customer satisfaction, retailers are adopting a variety of self-service technologies (SSTs) at an increasing rate. According to a survey conducted by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), while only six percent of the supermarkets in the USA had offered self-checkout lanes in 1999, that share has jumped to thirty-five percent in 2003 (Grimes, 2004), and reached to nearly ninety-five percent in 2007. Furthermore, a recent IHL report shows that approximately 15–40% of all daily transaction value and 12–30% of the daily dollar value of supermarkets (Kroger, Albertson's and others) are being handled by self-checkouts (Holmen and Buzek, 2012). Similar trends are developing in other countries as well. For instance, the NCR Corporation reported that self-checkouts were introduced to Turkish consumers in five grocery stores for the first time in Turkey in 1999 (NCR, 2001). Turkey mirrored the strategy employed in the US by first introducing self-checkouts in supermarkets but unlike in the US where self-scanning initially failed (Dabholkar et al., 2003), shoppers in Turkey quickly became accustomed to the new system (NCR, 2001). Since then, the self-checkout use in the supermarkets has been increasing and approximately 107 supermarkets currently offer self-checkout service in Turkey. Rapid advances in technology are significantly influencing how retailers deliver their functions and stay competitive in the globalized markets. These technological advancements are dramatically altering the way consumers interact with retailers and how retailers communicate with their customers. To reduce cost, increase value, and improve customer satisfaction, retailers are adopting a variety of self-service technologies (SSTs) at an increasing rate. According to a survey conducted by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), while only six percent of the supermarkets in the USA had offered self-checkout lanes in 1999, that share has jumped to thirty-five percent in 2003 (Grimes, 2004), and reached to nearly ninety-five percent in 2007. Furthermore, a recent IHL report shows that approximately 15–40% of all daily transaction value and 12–30% of the daily dollar value of supermarkets (Kroger, Albertson's and others) are being handled by self-checkouts (Holmen and Buzek, 2012). Similar trends are developing in other countries as well. For instance, the NCR Corporation reported that self-checkouts were introduced to Turkish consumers in five grocery stores for the first time in Turkey in 1999 (NCR, 2001). Turkey mirrored the strategy employed in the US by first introducing self-checkouts in supermarkets but unlike in the US where self-scanning initially failed (Dabholkar et al., 2003), shoppers in Turkey quickly became accustomed to the new system (NCR, 2001). Since then, the self-checkout use in the supermarkets has been increasing and approximately 107 supermarkets currently offer self-checkout service in Turkey. Although the retailers have been using SSTs for a while and interest in the SSTs is not a new concept, the measurement and evaluation of the value of SSTs are becoming increasingly more important as the retailers expand their offerings and more and more customers utilize such services. A recent survey conducted for NCR shows that almost half of the shoppers under the age of 45 prefer to use self-services in supermarkets (Giesen, 2012). While retailers are motivated by cost reductions, efficiency, flexibility, productivity and improved corporate performance when adopting SSTs (Lee et al., 2009 and Bitner et al., 2002), it is imperative to examine the customers' shopping experiences and service quality expectations of self-checkout systems' (SCS) in order to accomplish improved retailer service performance, customer satisfaction and loyalty. A considerable amount of previous research has studied the importance of service quality on customer satisfaction and loyalty using established measurement scales such as SERVQUAL (Parasuraman et al., 1988). Also, the existing research on the measurement of the service quality of SSTs has generally focused on e-services and much less research attempts have been made to examine the measurement of SCS service quality and its impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty. Moreover, most of the previous research has focused on assessing service quality as a global measure of the firm's offerings; we argue that service quality assessments should have a narrower focus for different microlevels within an organization because of the unique nature of different service offerings. Focusing research attention to service quality of the newly adopted systems, such as SCSs, in a retail organization then becomes crucial because such emphasis will not only contribute to the systemic quality improvements for other offerings of the retailer but also contribute to a management culture that accepts the improvements in service quality as a long-term continuous process and its importance as a key element for the success of the entire organization. We argue that the role of service quality delivered by SCSs should be investigated to understand its influence on consumers' patronage intentions towards retailers as a whole. Therefore, rather than simply examining consumers' acceptance of or satisfactions/dissatisfactions with the SCSs, the purpose of this research is to examine the service quality of supermarket/grocery store SCSs and its impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty in an emerging market, namely Turkey. We first provide a brief synthesis of the service quality literature in general on key conceptual issues. We then focus on the current attempts made to measure service quality in SSTs and more particularly in SCSs. Next, we present our conceptualized model with respect to the role of service quality on loyalty. Finally, we present the results of quantitative analyses and offer explanations of the study's findings.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Self-service technologies (SSTs) have become an integral part in consumers' daily lives. Keeping up with the trend, supermarkets around the world have started to adopt self-checkout systems (SCSs) at an increasing rate. However, consumers' response to such changes in service encounters could vary significantly and influence their satisfaction with the retailer offerings. As SCSs become a major trend in supermarket service delivery, investigating the effects of SCS service quality on customer satisfaction and loyalty becomes crucial for the supermarkets. The service quality debate has generated differing views on the measures and dimensions of service quality (Ladhari, 2008). These disagreements often originate from the different types of services studied and the extent of customer interface they involve. However, some of the recent publications in the literature point out to the need to address self-service technologies (SSTs) that the customers are being exposed with the advancements in technology and role of service quality of such an interface on customer satisfaction and loyalty. We agree with the arguments that measuring service quality using traditional scales such as SERVQUAL may not be effective and specific scales need to be used in capturing SST service quality dimensions. One such scale (SSTQUAL) has been recently introduced by Lin and Hsieh (2011) and its effectiveness has been validated. In this study, we attempted to use SSTQUAL to measure the service quality for the supermarket self-checkout systems (SCS) in an emerging market, namely Turkey, while keeping in mind that the special nature of such systems might require alterations in the dimensionality of the SSTQUAL. As expected, our study findings showed that younger customers had higher tendencies to use SCSs during their shopping in supermarkets. These consumers were also savvy with internet and technology use. Furthermore, findings also showed that the biggest complaints about self-checkout lines were related to difficulty of use when more items were purchased and when the items did not have a bar code (i.e., produce or bulk) and needed to be weighed. Confirmatory (CFA) and structural analyses (SEM) were used to validate the relationships hypothesized in the conceptual model among constructs. CFA results pointed out to a reduced set dimensionality of the SSTQUAL. Factor structure confirmed the presence of five factors as opposed to the original seven factors. Further analysis showed that both security/privacy and customization dimensions did not have the appropriate psychometric properties and hence had to be pruned. We strongly argue that such an action is justified because of the nature of SCSs as opposed to the SSTs. In supermarket self-checkouts, customers would have least concerns for security/privacy issues in contrast to other systems such as online purchases. Furthermore, SCSs are relatively simplified and do not allow any form of customization or may not be needed. Customer interaction with such systems is very short and concerns for customization are not present. Interestingly enough, the reduced number of dimensionality is very similar to the number of dimensions found in established service quality measurement scales such as SERVQUAL. This brings up the relevant discussion regarding whether or not researchers should focus on testing and validating the existing scales in different contextual and cultural environments or develop specific scales for different settings. Further investigation and conceptualization on this issue is needed. Based on our findings, we feel that five dimensions (functionality, enjoyment, design, assurance, and convenience) identified for the SCS service quality would allow customers to assess service quality of the supermarket self-checkouts. As described by Lin and Hsieh (2011), functionality refers to the characteristics of the self-checkout including ease of use, responsiveness and reliability. Enjoyment captures the perception with the use of the system. Design refers to the overall system and assurance portrays the confidence and competence of the retailer (service provider). Finally, convenience is related to the accessibility of the checkout service offered. As hypothesized, SEM results showed a positive and statistically significant relationship between self-checkout service quality and customer satisfaction (H1). However, our results did not provide support for the direct effect (H2) between self-checkout service quality and customer loyalty but the indirect effect on customer loyalty through the customer satisfaction path is supported (H3). Finally, as hypothesized, results supported the positive link between customer satisfaction and loyalty. Based on these results, it is important for the supermarkets to spend concerted efforts in understanding how their customers evaluate their self-checkout systems and identify the factors that might influence customer satisfaction/dissatisfaction with their use of such systems. These factors could provide necessary information for the supermarket to improve satisfaction and or plan for alternative methods/means to deal with the self-checkout service delivery issues. Given the criticism SERVQUAL faced in the literature as mentioned earlier, this study provides insights into how service quality may be bridged and addressed in the self-service technologies. However, it is important to note that even if we sued SSTQUAL, the dimensions identified in this study were not significantly different from the SERVQUAL dimensions. Thus, while SERVQUAL occupies an important place in service quality evaluations, for supermarket self-checkout situations our study shows that specific aspects of SSTQUAL are best reflected in five different dimensions. Thus, our study does not refute SERVQUAL or SSTQUAL but reframes them. This reframing, however, may vary for different industries and cultural environments, suggesting the need for additional studies along this line of reasoning to explain the variations found in service quality studies. Thus, in some industries involving self-checkouts, there may be two- or four-dimensional service quality assessments. This needs to be investigated in future research. Our results represent an incremental contribution to the service quality literature, particularly from an emerging environment of service encounters, structural and measurement perspective, suggesting the need to consider the unique measurement scales when measuring service quality for self-checkout services. Specifically, with respect to measuring service quality of supermarket self-checkouts, it appears that the construct is represented adequately by five dimensions of SSTQUAL. Structural analysis showed that self-checkout service quality is found to have a positive and statistically significant effect on customer satisfaction and ultimately customer loyalty in supermarkets. Moreover, the relationships identified in this study were based on a culturally different international environment which provides further evidence on the construct validity and applicability of service quality measurement in different environments.