Retailing Groundedness: How to improve customer experience, brand perceptions, and customer loyalty through feelings of groundedness

Gianna Bruckberger, Christoph Fuchs, Martin Schreier, Stijn M.J.Van Osselaer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

The retail landscape has undergone substantial disruption due to the rise of powerful online retailers and fast-evolving customer demand. This shift has prompted a need to redefine the role of physical stores as platforms for unique shopping experiences and customer interactions. In this paper, we introduce the concept of groundedness into the retailing literature. We develop a framework describing how retailers can provide value through groundedness. Specifically, the framework outlines three domains— (1) store design, (2) assortment, and (3) events—to facilitate the connection between customers and three pillars of groundedness—connections to (a) place, (b) people, and (c) past. Our guidelines and suggested interventions assist retailing practitioners and scholars in creating physical store environments that satisfy customers’ need for groundedness. We argue that evoking feelings of groundedness in physical stores benefits customers, salespeople, and retailers. We specifically highlight how retailing groundedness can enhance customers’ shopping experience, brand perception, as well as loyalty. Furthermore, we discuss how these effects on customers, combined with store associates’ greater job satisfaction, can benefit retailers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)594-604
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Retailing
Volume99
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Customer experience
  • Customer meaning
  • Groundedness
  • Rootedness
  • Store atmosphere
  • Store design

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