To Study the Relationship between Service Encounter and Retail Experience on Customer Satisfaction and Customer Loyalty with Impact of Loyalty Program Membership
The authors of the study are inquisitive to understand the relationship between Service Encounter and Retail Experience under the dynamic business environment in India. The purpose behind conducting this study was to examine the link between the customers’ idea of a retail customer experience (CE), service encounter and its effect on satisfaction and loyalty and to further establish the effect of loyalty programs on these links as well. The study was undertaken in Pune city, which is well established, and it has been evident to observe and possibly imitate entrance of international competitors. The data was collected using convenience-sampling technique from the Major supermarkets, hypermarkets, malls and single brand retail stores of Pune with or without loyalty programs based on their location and model of operations. In addition to that, partly data was collected using google forms to capture the attitude of retail customers from major cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Ludhiana. The findings confirmed the model of customer experiences and service encounter leading to customer satisfaction and customer loyalty and supported positive relation with customer satisfaction. However, it discarded the role of loyalty programs membership in enhancing customer loyalty. Further studies can / may examine whether the findings hold true for each individual loyalty program or not. The paper calls for more studies and measures to encourage publication of negative empirical outcomes to ensure empirical generalization and self-correction in the literature. Managers in retail segment should focus their attention on the design and delivery of customer experience, without placing reliance on loyalty programs. Both cognitive and emotional attributes of retail services must be considered for managing a holistic Customer Experience.