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Building customer loyalty in online retailing: The role of relationship quality

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This paper examines the challenge of building customer loyalty in the e-tailing environment. It examines the role of relationship quality (RQ) in the formation of customer loyalty in Internet retailing. In a departure from existing research, RQ is treated as a disaggregated, multidimensional construct, rather than a global one, consisting of relationship satisfaction (RS), trust, and commitment. Based on an online survey of 491 Internet grocery shoppers, structural equation modelling is used to test the influence of the different dimensions of RQ on e-loyalty. Results show that RS, perceived relational investment, and affective commitment have a strong and positive impact on e-loyalty. Trust also has a strong effect but works via RS. The results suggest that the disaggregated model of RQ provides a better prediction of e-loyalty than the aggregated model of RQ.

Keywords: Internet retailing; e-loyalty; perceived relationship investment; relationship quality

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Loughborough University, UK 2: The Robert Gordon University, UK 3: Northumbria University, UK

Publication date: February 1, 2013

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