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Price fairness perceptions and customer loyalty in a retail context


  • Martin, William C.
  • Ponder, Nicole
  • Lueg, Jason E.


Loyalty and fairness are major research topics in the marketing literature. However, research examining how customer loyalty and fairness perceptions affect each other is lacking. This study examines these two topics in the context of a retailer increasing its prices, develops hypotheses, and tests these hypotheses using an experimental design approach. Results indicate that loyalty has a positive effect on fairness perceptions when price increases are low, though no such effect is found when price increases are high. Also, justifiable reasons for price increases lead to increased fairness perceptions when price increases are low, but any reason offered when price increases are high increases fairness perceptions. Whether distributive or procedural fairness influences post customer loyalty in the presence of price increases is dependent on both the level of the price increase and the reason offered for the price increase. This research provides implications for retailers and directions for future research.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin, William C. & Ponder, Nicole & Lueg, Jason E., 2009. "Price fairness perceptions and customer loyalty in a retail context," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 62(6), pages 588-593, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:62:y:2009:i:6:p:588-593

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1986. "Fairness and the Assumptions of Economics," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(4), pages 285-300, October.
    2. Babin, Barry J. & Hardesty, David M. & Suter, Tracy A., 2003. "Color and shopping intentions: The intervening effect of price fairness and perceived affect," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 56(7), pages 541-551, July.
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    5. Vaidyanathan, Rajiv & Aggarwal, Praveen, 2003. "Who is the fairest of them all? An attributional approach to price fairness perceptions," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 56(6), pages 453-463, June.
    6. Dickson, Peter R. & Kalapurakal, Rosemary, 1994. "The use and perceived fairness of price-setting rules in the bulk electricity market," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 427-448, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gunnarsson, Jonas, 2015. "Retailer Price Image - An Introduction and Literature Review," SSE Working Paper Series in Business Administration 2015:2, Stockholm School of Economics.
    2. Lastner, Matthew M. & Folse, Judith Anne Garretson & Mangus, Stephanie M. & Fennell, Patrick, 2016. "The road to recovery: Overcoming service failures through positive emotions," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(10), pages 4278-4286.
    3. Mohammed Belal Uddin & Bilkis Akhter, 2012. "Customer Satisfaction In Mobile Phone Services In Bangladesh: A Survey Research," Management and Marketing Journal, University of Craiova, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, vol. 0(1), pages 20-36, May.
    4. Richards, Timothy J. & Liaukonyte, Jura & Streletskaya, Nadia A., 2016. "Personalized pricing and price fairness," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 138-153.
    5. Kuo, Andrew & Rice, Dan Hamilton & Fennell, Patrick, 2016. "How fitting! The influence of fence-context fit on price discrimination fairness," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(8), pages 2634-2640.
    6. Dutta, Sujay & Yaprak, Attila & Grewal, Dhruv, 2017. "Fairness perceptions of retail price increases by foreign and domestic brands: The roles of ethnocentric beliefs, profit stickiness, and contextual information," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 37-45.
    7. Homburg, Christian & Totzek, Dirk & Krämer, Melanie, 2014. "How price complexity takes its toll: The neglected role of a simplicity bias and fairness in price evaluations," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(6), pages 1114-1122.
    8. Kaplan, Sigal & de Abreu e Silva, João & Di Ciommo, Floridea, 2014. "The relationship between young people׳s transit use and their perceptions of equity concepts in transit service provision," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 79-87.
    9. Lin, Ying-Ching & Fang, Shiuan-Huei, 2013. "The face value of foreign currency on consumer price perception—The moderating effect of product substitution," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(6), pages 745-751.
    10. Marjan S. Jalali & Fernando A. F. Ferreira & João J. M. Ferreira & Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė, 2016. "Integrating Metacognitive and Psychometric Decision-Making Approaches for Bank Customer Loyalty Measurement," International Journal of Information Technology & Decision Making (IJITDM), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 15(04), pages 815-837, July.
    11. Lynn, Michael & Wang, Shuo, 2013. "The indirect effects of tipping policies on patronage intentions through perceived expensiveness, fairness, and quality," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 62-71.
    12. Richards, Timothy & Liaukonyte, Jura & Nadia, Streletskya, 2016. "Personalized Pricing and Price Fairness," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, 2016, Boston, Massachusetts 235809, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    13. Pez, Virginie & Butori, Raphaëlle & de Kerviler, Gwarlann, 2015. "Because I'm worth it: The impact of given versus perceived status on preferential treatment effectiveness," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 68(12), pages 2477-2483.


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