Supermarkets in Cyberspace: A Conceptual Framework to Capture the Influence of Online Food Retail Environments on Consumer Behavior
2. Materials and Methods
- A literature review and development of an initial framework
- Key informant interviews
- Pilot testing and refinement of the draft framework
- Group discussion with experts to establish content validity
2.1. Literature Review
2.2. Key Informant Interviews
2.3. Pilot Testing
2.4. Expert Discussion
3.1. Evolution of the Conceptual Framework
3.2. Description of the Conceptual Framework
3.2.1. Path to Purchase
3.2.2. Consumer-Level Attributes
3.2.3. Retailer-Level Attributes
3.2.4. Cross-Cutting Domains
Conflicts of Interest
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Stage of Path to Purchase
(Static vs. Dynamic)
|Construct||Description and Examples|
Preferences and Past Behaviors
|Technology Acceptance||Associated factors include familiarity with internet technology, perceived ease of use, risks associated with online food retail, concerns with web security and privacy of personal and financial information, past exposure to online food retail, safe and reliable access to the internet|
|Individual and Household Demographics||Factors include age, sex, income, education level, employment, disability, injuries resulting from accidents, urban/rural residence, geographic location, distance from physical store, price sensitivity, marital status, family culture, household size, and social class|
|Food-Related Preferences and Behaviors||Associated factors include familiarity with product, health consciousness, perceived need to inspect item or assess sensory properties prior to purchase, dietary preferences and allergies, perceived safety of delivered foods, perceived costs, and value of online versus in-store products|
|Attitudes and Beliefs||These encompass consumer beliefs about the online retailer’s brand image, online service quality, perceived importance of social contact while grocery shopping, time savings, convenience, perceived cognitive effort versus gain, perceived comparative advantage compared to brick-and-mortar stores|
Stage of Path to Purchase
(Static vs. Dynamic)
|Construct||Description and Examples|
|Retailer Policies and Practices|
|Site Access||Associated policies include ease of initiating and terminating grocery purchase services (online sign-up policies, membership cancellation procedures), referral schemes and incentives that allow risk-free trial of the online platform, multi-channel presence to help streamline access to food retailer services through mobile applications, websites, and the physical store|
|Privacy and Data Sharing||These policies determine how consumer data on purchase patterns, personal demographic information, etc., are stored, protected, and used by the retailer and/or shared with third parties|
|Inventory Management||Associated practices encompass product availability, assortment and variety of fresh and packaged goods, variety among the brands stocked, similarity in online–offline assortment, product price point, dynamic pricing strategies, similarity in online–offline pricing and promotions|
|Collection and Payment||Policies cover consumer-friendly pick-up, delivery, and payment (no cost delivery, pick-up options, waiver of fees for purchases over a designated value or those made at a certain frequency, etc.), multi-option payment channels, acceptance of EBT, loyalty programs linked to redeemable rewards|
|Retailer Policies and Practices|
|Order Fulfillment||Policies determine the concordance between items delivered compared to items ordered, item quantity, freshness, and the physical condition in which the grocery items arrive, packaging of products, handling of stock-outs, and appropriateness and price of product substitutions|
|Order Delivery||Policies cover flexibility in choosing type of collection (click-and-collect versus delivery), availability of delivery slots, length of delivery slot, delivery coordination, the ability to track the real-time location of the groceries purchased, convenient and safe drop-off location options (doorstep delivery, key locations within the community)|
|Returns and Order Cancellation||Associated policies address unsatisfactory deliveries, incorrect orders, cancelled orders, and requests for refunds or store credit|
|Personalized Marketing by Retailers|
|Product—Product Mix||These include the variety, brands, and assortment of products the consumer can view on the online platform|
|Price—Discounts||Examples include lower prices on targeted products (discounts, two-for-one deals, cost-saving strategies) which may be open to all customers or exclusive to members of loyalty programs|
|Price—Rewards||Rewards include links to coupons, loyalty programs, membership rewards, and other redeemable rewards|
|Price—Time-Limited Deals||These include special deals that are valid for a set period (24 h, 3 h, etc.) or weekly flyers meant to incentivize food purchase within a specific period of time|
|Placement—Cross-Promotions||Examples include marketing of complementary products anchored to a previous search or to items already in the shopping cart (milk and eggs suggested on a search results page for bread or milk suggested at checkout when cereal is in the shopping cart)|
|Placement—Search Result Order||Examples include non-random presentation of products (search results ordered by the most expensive products or display of sponsored products before other items)|
|Placement—Recommendations||Examples include seasonal products, popular items, recently viewed products, suggestions based on past purchases, recommended product/brand swaps, or impulse buys (cookies or candy recommended at checkout)|
|Promotions—Advertisements||These include products on paid banner advertisements or title cards (large panel of images or text at the top of a page) displayed on the website that link to a separate landing page featuring the sponsored product|
|Promotions—Branded Site Content||Examples include branded products integrated into the existing site content, like department images (branded cereal displayed to indicate the breakfast cereal department), branded recipes or meal solutions (branded marinara sauce depicted in a lasagna recipe), promoted product swaps, and retailer-generated shopping lists|
|Promotions—User Feedback||This includes highlighting consumer product reviews and ratings to promote the selection of certain products|
|Promotions—Social Media||Examples include links to the retailer’s Instagram, Facebook, or other social media pages promoting specific brands or products and opportunities for consumers to share purchased products through personal social media accounts|
|Promotions—Point-of-purchase Information||These include labels, nutrient and health claims (non-GMO, whole-grain), and other product descriptors (product source, organic) that may be personalized to promote the selection of certain products|
|Customization of Website by Consumer|
|Product Information Display||Functional features on the webpage may allow consumers to filter products based on pre-selected information about their allergens, ingredients, nutrition facts, nutrition rating systems, country of origin, product reviews, and ratings based on their preferences|
|Site Navigation||Examples include tools and tutorials to help consumers navigate the website, browse through departments, engage with available features to customize the ‘look and feel’ of their online shopping interface (change display size, image size, orientation)|
|Shopping Tools||These tools increase the convenience of product search and selection by allowing consumers to choose their preferred setting to create and save shopping lists, notes and wish lists, and allow for product/brand comparisons|
|Other Food Marketing|
|Promotional Strategies||Examples include advertisements, sponsorship, endorsements, search result optimization|
|Social Media Strategies||These include strategies that utilize social media content, podcasts, videos, or user-generated content|
|Immersive Strategies||These include strategies like advergames, interactive advertisements to increase the marketing that the consumer is exposed to, while increasing consumer site engagement|
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Khandpur, N.; Zatz, L.Y.; Bleich, S.N.; Taillie, L.S.; Orr, J.A.; Rimm, E.B.; Moran, A.J. Supermarkets in Cyberspace: A Conceptual Framework to Capture the Influence of Online Food Retail Environments on Consumer Behavior. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 8639. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228639
Khandpur N, Zatz LY, Bleich SN, Taillie LS, Orr JA, Rimm EB, Moran AJ. Supermarkets in Cyberspace: A Conceptual Framework to Capture the Influence of Online Food Retail Environments on Consumer Behavior. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(22):8639. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228639Chicago/Turabian Style
Khandpur, Neha, Laura Y. Zatz, Sara N. Bleich, Lindsey Smith Taillie, Jennifer A. Orr, Eric B. Rimm, and Alyssa J. Moran. 2020. "Supermarkets in Cyberspace: A Conceptual Framework to Capture the Influence of Online Food Retail Environments on Consumer Behavior" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 22: 8639. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17228639