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The differential effects of retail density: An investigation of goods versus service settings


  • Pan, Yue
  • Siemens, Jennifer Christie


Two studies investigate the impact of retail density and time pressure on shoppers' store attitudes and behavioral intentions. In a goods setting, experiment 1 results show a curvilinear pattern as the level of retail density increases. That is, individuals prefer a medium level of crowding to a store with low or high crowding. This inverted-U shaped crowding effect has not previously been tested in the retailing literature. Experiment 2 employs a service setting, where the relationship between retail crowding and outcome variables is found to be linear rather than curvilinear, except under conditions of time pressure. In contrast to the goods setting, individuals have more favorable attitudes and expect to pay more for a service as the level of crowding increases. Thus, our study findings suggest that the optimal level of crowding depends on the type of retail setting.

Suggested Citation

  • Pan, Yue & Siemens, Jennifer Christie, 2011. "The differential effects of retail density: An investigation of goods versus service settings," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 105-112, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:64:y:2011:i:2:p:105-112

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Pons, Frank & Laroche, Michel, 2007. "Cross-cultural differences in crowd assessment," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 269-276, March.
    2. Arnould, Eric J & Price, Linda L, 1993. " River Magic: Extraordinary Experience and the Extended Service Encounter," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(1), pages 24-45, June.
    3. Bateson, John E G & Hui, Michael K, 1992. " The Ecological Validity of Photographic Slides and Videotapes in Simulating the Service Setting," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 271-281, September.
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    6. Michon, Richard & Chebat, Jean-Charles & Turley, L. W., 2005. "Mall atmospherics: the interaction effects of the mall environment on shopping behavior," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 58(5), pages 576-583, May.
    7. Grossbart, Sanford & Hampton, Ronald & Rammohan, B. & Lapidus, Richard S., 1990. "Environmental dispositions and customer response to store atmospherics," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 225-241, November.
    8. Holt, Douglas B, 1995. " How Consumers Consume: A Typology of Consumption Practices," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 1-16, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wei-Lun Chang & Ling-Yao Huang, 2016. "Measuring service experience: a utility-based heuristic model," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 10(1), pages 1-30, March.
    2. Collier, Joel E. & Moore, Robert S. & Horky, Alisha & Moore, Melissa L., 2015. "Why the little things matter: Exploring situational influences on customers' self-service technology decisions," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 703-710.
    3. repec:eee:joreco:v:21:y:2014:i:5:p:780-787 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eee:joreco:v:21:y:2014:i:1:p:54-60 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:eee:jouret:v:93:y:2017:i:4:p:541-549 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Uhrich, Sebastian & Tombs, Alastair, 2014. "Retail customers' self-awareness: The deindividuation effects of others," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(7), pages 1439-1446.
    7. repec:eee:joreco:v:20:y:2013:i:6:p:642-649 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:eee:joreco:v:18:y:2011:i:5:p:405-413 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Pons, Frank & Giroux, Marilyn & Mourali, Mehdi & Zins, Michel, 2016. "The relationship between density perceptions and satisfaction in the retail setting: Mediation and moderation effects," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 1000-1007.
    10. repec:eee:joreco:v:26:y:2015:i:c:p:104-114 is not listed on IDEAS


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