کیفیت خدمات در خرده فروشی سوپرمارکت : شناسایی تجارب انتقادی خدمات
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|2982||2001||14 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Volume 8, Issue 1, January 2001, Pages 1–14
The present research attempts to clarify and extend the conceptualization and measurement of service quality in the retail environment. The review of the retail and service quality literatures and the findings from a qualitative study conducted by the authors reveal that service quality in retail companies adopting the commercial format of supermarkets has a four factor structure (physical aspects, reliability, personal interaction and policies). Various models are tested by means of confirmatory factor analysis and a measurement scale is proposed. We conclude the paper with an importance-performance analysis, a summary of the main results of the study and directions for future research.
Researching service quality in retail companies first implies an understanding of quality. There are various approaches as to the concept of quality, which are summarized in Fig. 1. This article defends the conceptual framework of service quality based on the demand approach, recognizing that the quality of a service depends on its evaluation by the consumer. The retail company must analyse the aspects of service quality perceived (subjective quality), in an attempt to be efficient (ascertain the effect of such a quality strategy on company costs).The concept of service quality is linked to the concepts of perceptions and expectations. Service quality perceived by the customers is the result of comparing the expectations about the service they are going to receive and their perceptions of the retail company's actions (Parasuraman et al., 1988; Grönroos, 1994). If perceptions exceed expectations, the service provided by the retail companies will be considered excellent; if it only equals the expectations it will be regarded as good or adequate; if it does not meet them, the service will be classed as bad, poor or deficient. From this perspective, a contribution which has aroused a great deal of attention is that of Parasuraman et al. (1988). These authors developed a scale termed SERVQUAL which operationalizes service quality by calculating the difference between expectations and perceptions, evaluating both in relation to the 22 items that represent five service quality dimensions known as tangibles, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and empathy. This scale or an adaptation of this has been used in a great number of studies (for a review of these see Buttle, 1996) that have provoked an interesting debate on the use and the explanatory power of expectations and the doubt as to whether to incorporate them or not (will it be enough with perceptions?) and how to do it (are direct measures more appropriate than difference measures?). The universality of the scale and its dimensions have also been the subject of criticisms (Lapierre et al., 1996) and it is suggested that they require customization to the specific service sector in which they are applied. Paying attention to these opinions and results, the aim of the present research is to perform a review of the set of attributes which are capable of being incorporated in the measure of service quality for retail companies adopting the commercial format of supermarkets. Later, the possibility is posed of grouping these attributes into dimensions of quality, proceeding to value various alternative structures by means of confirmatory factor analysis methodology and testing their reliability and validity. The article also compares the results obtained using perceptions only (like in the SERVPERF scale designed by Cronin and Taylor, 1992 and Cronin and Taylor, 1994) and using direct measures — to what extent the consumers consider their perceptions to be superior, similar or inferior to the expected service — as it has been suggested, among other authors, by Carman (1990),Devlin and Dong (1990),Bolton and Drew (1991a),Babakus and Boller (1992),Hartline and Ferrel (1993),Vandamme and Leunis (1993),Parasuraman et al. (1994). Finally, an expectation-performance analysis is developed and appropriate conclusions are drawn in order to orient future research works.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The main conclusions drawn in this research work as well as the orientation for further research can be summarized in the following aspects: 1. The CALSUPER scale may be of use in measuring the service quality in retail companies competing with the commercial format of supermarkets. The dimensions making up this scale are: physical aspects, reliability, personal interaction and policies. 2. Given that different dimensions of service quality have been detected, if the retail company is capable of ascertaining their importance, it would have sufficient information and a good incentive for identifying problems and concentrating resources on the improvement of specific aspects of service quality. 3. We have interpreted expectations as “importance” and according to the data obtained in the study prices are not as important as was at first expected. The consumer increasingly desires a quality strategy mainly in the sections of personal interaction (responsiveness and assurance), keeping promises and physical aspects. 4. Price competition in food retailing is a well-disguised myth. Should food retailers continue to emphasize low prices in their competitive strategies or should they accept the risk of asking customers to pay a premium for enhanced service? 5. The replication of the study at different moments in time will enable the retailer to ascertain the effectiveness of the decisions adopted to favourably influence service quality and satisfaction, intention to purchase, loyalty and consumer preference. Furthermore, the consequent replication studies are essential to analyse the “predictive validity” of the scale under study. 6. It will be necessary to research other sales outlets of the same chain, other types of retail companies (hypermarkets, discount stores, specialized shops), other sectors (for example textiles and consumer durables) to check the suitability of the service quality structure obtained in this research and detect if it is necessary to consider other additional attributes. The categories identified here have been found to work for food retailing but would these categories have the same emphasis in other retail operations, such as fashion retailing? 7. There is a high positive correlation between service quality perceived and satisfaction. Nevertheless, an effort must be made to clarify this relation embarking on studies to ascertain which of these is the antecedent or if a two-directional relation can be accepted. 8. Furthermore, research must be developed in order to determine the effects of quality on financial results. This would involve checking if quality improvements result in a reduction in costs (such improvements are more prevalent in standardized services) or if the extra spending necessary for quality improvement actually improves revenue rather than reducing costs (this is because customization inhibits economies of scale and thus makes individual improvement less cost-effective). To summarize, our proposed measure of retail service quality is a scale consisting of 18 items, developed from the literature review and both a qualitative and a descriptive research carried out in supermarket stores. Based on the results of this study it appears that these 18 attributes can be broken down into four basic service quality dimensions, but we recognize that, in spite of the effort made, the market dynamics enable new competitive strategies to appear which influence service quality and which may have been omitted in this work. In the future, consumers may also reveal other important attributes which could be identified by using critical incident technique.