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In-store quality (in)congruency as a driver of perceived legitimacy and shopping behavior

Damien Chaney, Renaud Lunardo and Camille Saintives

Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 2015, vol. 24, issue C, 51-59

Abstract: This research builds on the institutional theory literature to investigate the impact of retailer’s in-store quality (in)congruency on consumer shopping behavior. Specifically, considering the consensual view of legitimacy as a variable of main interest to explain organizational survival, this research focuses on legitimacy as the mediating variable explaining the effects of in-store quality (in)congruency on shopping behavior. Results from a scenario-based experiment show that in-store quality (in)congruency affects legitimacy such that when merchandise quality is low, a high store environment quality leads to lower legitimacy. Also, the results show that legitimacy acts as a mediator that induces a decrease in shopping behavior. By highlighting perceived legitimacy as the underlying mechanism explaining the effect of in-store quality incongruency on consumer behavior, this research offer new insights for retailers.

Keywords: Legitimacy; Incongruency; Store environment quality; Merchandise quality; Approach behavior (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jretconser.2015.02.002

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