Due to the saturation in the market, the Western European retailers encounter heavy competition. The obvious response of the retailer is to reduce prices. However this is a street without the end: the margins decrease with no more business being run. However by focusing on price only, retailers make it difficult for consumers to see the difference between them. The purpose of this dissertation proposal is to develop a scientific framework of differentiation in the retail. The central research question is: "How can retailers differentiate themselves from the competition and build a sustainable competitive advantage in today's competitive, price-driven environment." By studying the alternative ways of store differentiation, the process itself, the impact on store choice, patronage and loyalty among consumers, this framework allows further elaboration, testing and refining the topic. Deep literature review will allow us to better understand the differentiation process, the distinctive alternative strategies, the history and the results of differentiation in general and alternative strategies more specifically. We will do this using a combination of explorative research, to further develop the model, and quantitative research for testing. Based on these findings, we can draw conclusions for retailers who seek a long term vision.
Effective start/end date1/10/0730/09/12

    Flemish discipline codes

  • Other social sciences

    Research areas

  • economics

ID: 3221161