Purchasing Behavior of Bakery
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Human beings are continuously engaged in some activity or other in order to satisfy their unlimited wants. Every day we come across the word ‘business’ or ‘businessman’ directly or indirectly. Business has become essential part of modern world. Business is an economic activity, which is related with continuous and regular production and distribution of goods and services for satisfying human wants.
All of us need food, clothing and shelter. We also have many other household requirements to be satisfied in our daily lives. We met these requirements from the shopkeeper. The shopkeeper gets from wholesaler. The wholesaler gets from manufacturers. The shopkeeper, the wholesaler, the manufacturer are doing business and therefore they are called as Businessman. Thus, the term business means continuous production and distribution of goods and services with the aim of earning profits under uncertain market conditions.
It’s a well-known fact that no business can exist without customers. It’s critical that you form a close working relationship with your client; customer service is of vital importance. What follows are a selection of tips that will make your clients feel valued, wanted and loved. That’s how important customer satisfaction in a certain business.
Customer satisfaction, a term frequently used in marketing, is a measure of how products and services supplied by a company meet or surpass customer expectation. Customer satisfaction is defined as “the number of customers, or percentage of total customers, whose reported experience with a firm, its products, or its services (ratings) exceeds specified satisfaction goals. Customer satisfaction refers to the extent to which customers are happy with the products and services provided by a business. Gaining high levels of customer satisfaction is very important to a business because satisfied customers are most likely to be loyal and to make repeat orders and to use a wide range of services offered by a business.
What is clear about customer satisfaction is that customers are most likely to appreciate the goods and services that they buy if they are made to feel special. This occurs when they feel that the goods and services that they buy have been specially produced for them or for people like them.
But this research will focus more on the level of satisfaction of consumers in laundry services. Business people, office employees, call center agents, ordinary laborer and other workers are mostly their customers. But due to the fact that Laundry Businesses already gained high demand from the costumers, the question is, do they “still” achieve the satisfaction that they wanted or deserve? Now, in this research you will be able to know and study the different levels of consumer satisfaction in Laundry Services.
B. CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK
INPUTS Consumers are categorized based on: * Age * Gender * Occupation * Monthly Income| | PROCESSMethods used for this research are: * Questionnaire Survey * Consumer Research| | OUTPUTS * Customer Satisfaction * Improved customer service|
C. STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
This marketing research entitled “Levels of Satisfaction of Consumers in Laundry Services in Imus” will specifically attempt to answer the following questions: 1. What is the profile of consumers who patronizes laundry services according to: a. Age
d. Monthly Income
2. What are the factors considered by consumers in patronizing laundry shop business? 3. To what extent are the factors considered by consumers in patronizing laundry shop business? 4. Is there a significant difference in the factors considered in laundry services, when grouped according to age, gender, occupation and income?
D. Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to analyze the level of customers’ satisfaction of consumers in laundry services in City of Imus. This analysis would be made by assessing customers’ opinion through a well-designed questionnaire. Considering the results of this analysis, the study will try to suggest the strategy for achieving a desirable customers’ satisfaction in the light of new marketing approaches. E. Significance of the Study
The researchers believes that businessmen and the consumers, particularly in City of Imus will be benefited from the findings of this study since it provides basis for awareness and better understanding about customer satisfaction. Consequently, this awareness also gives a much deeper understanding on how to keep satisfied customers and continuously make improvements to meet their demands. Businessmen / Entrepreneurs most especially the new ones in the business will be helped by this study in providing the best services to offer to their customers. Service Providers will be helped to enhance customer loyalty in providing improved service quality. The quality of service provided to the customers matters a lot more not only for the customers but it is a matter of great concern for the service provider as well. Common dimensions of satisfaction with a service include service quality, product quality, price, and location.
Consumers imply that they should get satisfied with the quality of service they receive. To future researchers, they may be able to use the result of the study in farther research similar to what the study is.
F. Scope and Limitations
The scopes of this research are those laundry shops customers currently residing in City of Imus. The limitations of this research are those people who have not yet avail any laundry services, for they don’t have any experiences. Only those people who have become a customer of laundry businesses are allowed to participate in this research.
G. Definition of Terms
Business – is an economic activity concerned with production and distribution of goods and services with the aim to earn profit. It includes
Economic Activities – are those efforts which undertaken by man to earn income, money, wealth for his life and to secure maximum satisfaction of wants with limited and scarce means Customer satisfaction – refers to the extent to which customers are happy with the products and services provided by a business
Wholesaler – person or firm that buys large quantity of goods from various producers or vendors, warehouses them, and resells to retailers. Customer Service – the process of ensuring customer satisfaction with a product or service. Often, customer service takes place while performing a transaction for the customer, such as making a sale or returning an item. Customer service can take the form of an in-person interaction, a phone call, self-service systems, or by other means
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
A. Theories of Service
The service is defined as a “prototype for service, covering the need of the customer and the design of the service”. Edvardsson and Olsson (1996, p. 149). Goldstein et al. (2002) suggest that the service concept integrates the “how” and “what” of service design while keeping both the customers’ needs and strategic intent of the firm in mind. In other words, the service concept gives a detailed description of what the customer needs and how the organization will deliver the service. The study of customers’ satisfaction in the field of general marketing has evolved into important parameters that need to be identified and understood in order to satisfy the needs and wants of customers. Since the success of a business has been linked to providing high levels of customers’ satisfaction, a substantial amount of effort has been focused on identifying how consumers perceive service quality in various settings. Gronroos (1982) has defined service quality as “the outcome of an evaluation process where the consumer compares his expectations with the service he perceived he has received.” Hence we can say that perceived service is measured against expected service. Service quality has been seen as the result of comparing a customer’s expectations prior to receiving the service with the customer’s experiences with the service.
Wyckoff (1984) defined the concept of service quality from the company’s perspective. Service quality is the degree of excellence for meeting the customer’s requirements, and control over the variability in achieving that excellence. According to Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1988) the study of service in the field of general marketing has evolved into important parameters that need to be identified and understood in order to satisfy the needs and wants of customers. With growing competition and emerging of hotel industry as a high profiting business, much preference is made to deliver a quality service to the customers.
The researchers have defined service quality as the result of comparing the expectation of service quality and the perception of feelings. That is, the service quality not only includes the evaluation of the service performances, but also includes the process of service (Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry, 1985, 1988). According to Sherden (1988), service quality is defined as a relationship between a customer and the particular employee with whom the customer is dealing. Although the actual level of service quality is developed in the employee-customer relationship, management must ensure that customers’ experiences are in line with their expectations. Lovelock (1991) has defined the characteristics of service quality. According to him, service quality is that; 1. which is delivered in a performance,
2. in which the customer is involved in production
3. in which other customers are often similarly involved in production (e.g., a theater) 4. in which quality control can only be performed during delivery 5. in which service cannot be inventoried,
6. deliver is “real-time”, and;
7. Distribution channels are nonexistent or compressed.
Examining service quality and its relationship with relevant constructs not only requires recognition of essential dimensions of service quality, but also identification of dimensions that are most meaningful to the customers in measuring the overall satisfaction. Therefore, having a better understanding of service quality is associated with considering various dimensions of service quality. Service quality dimensions or elements are those attributes that contribute to the creation of consumer expectations and perceptions of service quality. Service Quality called “SERVQUAL” is an instrument for measuring the gap between the services.” Therefore, what consumers think should be provided and what they think actually has been provided. Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1985, 1988) initially offered ten attributes, which they regard as essential to the quality of all services. These ten dimensions were tangibles, reliability, responsiveness, communication, credibility, security, competence, courtesy, understanding/knowing the customer, and access. These ten dimensions and their descriptions served as the basic structure of the service quality domain from which items were derived for the SERVQUAL scale. B. Impact of Service on Customer Satisfaction
The improved service quality provided to the customers enhances their loyalty to the service provider. Thus, attention has been paid to the concept of customer satisfaction as a corporate goal among academics and business practitioners (Rust & Oliver, 1995). Satisfaction is a major outcome of marketing processes that culminate in purchase, and satisfaction is also thought to contribute to post-purchasing phenomena such as word-of-mouth communication, repurchase intention, and brand loyalty. Gronholdt, Martensen, and Kristensen (2000) administered a study on sixty companies and found that customer satisfaction would have significant impacts on customer loyalty. Bowen and Chen (2001) focused on the hotel industry to examine the relationship between customer satisfaction and customer loyalty. The results showed a slight increase in customer satisfaction would highly improve customer loyalty. Hence, customer satisfaction was inferred to have great impacts on customer loyalty. Moreover, Tam (2004) established an integrated framework of service quality, customer satisfaction, and perceived value, suggesting that customer satisfaction and perceived value have significant influences on customers’ future purchase behaviors.
Anderson and Sullivan (1993) believed that customer satisfaction positively influenced repurchase intentions. Repurchase intentions is considered a possible outcome of customer loyalty. Jones and Sasser (1995) stated that customer loyalty is “a feeling of attachment to or affection for a company’s people, products, or services.” Customer loyalty is often referred to as a purchase behavior, unlike customer satisfaction, which is an attitude. Repurchase behavior is a form of loyalty. Customer loyalty, a key mediating variable in explaining customer retention is concerned with the likelihood of a customer returning, making business referrals, providing strong word-of-mouth, as well as providing references and publicity (Bowen and Showemaker, 1998). Although most research on loyalty has focused on frequently purchased package goods (brand loyalty), the loyalty concept is also important for industrial goods (vendor loyalty), services (service loyalty), and retail establishment (store loyalty) Prior research has shown that one’s emotions have an influence on behavior, and that one responds to an event in certain ways to maintain positive emotions (i.e. happiness) and to avoid negative emotions (i.e. depression) (Strauss and Neuhaus, 1997).
Oliver, Rust, and Varki (1997) found that positive emotion led to higher levels of customer satisfaction and increased repurchase intentions. On the other hand, Andreasen (1999) found that initial negative emotion caused by a service failure results in customer exit behavior. Dick and Basu (1994) posited that true loyalty only exists when repeat patronage coexists with a high relative positive attitude. In addition to attitude, it has been argued that loyalty may also be based on cognition (Lee and Zeiss, 1980; Oliver, 1980). C. Quality in Customer Service
The quality of service provided to the customers matters a lot more not only for the customers but it is a matter of great concern for the service provider as well. Common dimensions of satisfaction with a service include service quality, product quality, price, and location. The theory suggest that the “people factor” (i.e., service quality), in terms of tangibility, reliability, responsiveness, assurance, and empathy, may be the most salient in determining overall satisfaction and repeated purchasing in service industries. Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1988) conceptualized perceived service quality as a long-run overall evaluation about a service, whereas satisfaction was a transaction-specific evaluation. Based on these conceptualizations, they posited that incidents of satisfaction over time result in perceptions of service quality. Other researchers supported the argument that customer satisfaction leads to service quality. For example, Bitner (1990) developed a model of service encounter evaluation and empirically supported the effect of satisfaction on service quality. Bolton and Drew (1991b) also proposed that satisfaction leads to service quality.
Cronin and Taylor (1992) reported that in their structural analysis for the causal relations among satisfaction, overall service quality, and purchase intention, the coefficients of path for service quality, satisfaction, and purchase intention appeared to be all significant while the coefficients of path for satisfaction, service quality, purchase intention were insignificant. Spreng and MacKoy (1996) also studied the relationship between service quality and satisfaction based on their modified Oliver’s (1993) satisfaction/service quality model. Their modified model fitted the data well where service quality was hypothesized to influence satisfaction. In their study, the path coefficient between two constructs appeared to be significant (t = 9.4). Woodside, Frey, and Daly (1989) supported the causal relation of service quality and satisfaction with data collected in area of health care. Several researchers stated that overall service quality is determined only by the customer’s perception of a service, rather than the difference between the customer’s expectation and actual service performance. D. Customer Satisfaction
The service literature has been contributed to the confusion over the relationship between consumer satisfaction and service quality. The most important that service providers need to know are how their objectives meet or exceed the customers’ satisfaction with their performance. The importance of this issue has been led to several recent efforts to clarify the relationship between satisfaction and service quality. The SERVQUAL measurement tool suggests that a consumer’s perception of service quality involves the difference between his or her expectations about the performance of a general class of service providers and his or her assessment of the actual performance of a specific firm within that class. SERVQUAL confounds customer satisfaction and customer attitude. In contrast, the SERVPERF version of the original SERVQUAL scale only concerns performance. Common dimensions of satisfaction with a service include service quality, product quality, price, and location. The theory suggest that the “people factor” (i.e., service quality), in terms of tangibility, reliability, responsiveness, assurance, and empathy, may be the most salient in determining overall satisfaction and repeated purchasing in service industries.
Parasuraman, Zeithaml, and Berry (1988) conceptualized perceived service quality as a long-run overall evaluation about a service, whereas satisfaction was a transaction-specific evaluation. Based on these conceptualizations, they posited that incidents of satisfaction over time result in perceptions of service quality. Other researchers supported the argument that customer satisfaction leads to service quality. For example, Bitner (1990) developed a model of service encounter evaluation and empirically supported the effect of satisfaction on service quality. Bolton and Drew (1991b) also proposed that satisfaction leads to service quality. Cronin and Taylor (1992) reported that in their structural analysis for the causal relations among satisfaction, overall service quality, and purchase intention, the coefficients of path for service quality, satisfaction, and purchase intention appeared to be all significant while the coefficients of path for satisfaction, service quality, purchase intention were insignificant. E. The Laundry Services
The laundry business serves a growing need of people to outsource their cleaning tasks because of a lack of time to do it themselves. And laundry industry is a strong and energetic kind of business. It is also one of the biggest threats for the business is the competition nowadays. Laundry shops are easily managed through the use of new technology. Take note of the service, it comprises of the use of detergent soaps to be used for the clothes, the water consumption, space to be saved by the customers in hanging their clothes to dry and the electricity that can be saved for ironing them. Generally, this kind of industry is really seen on the go for the target audience because of convenience and practicability. Laundry business all over the world has been gaining popularity most particularly in the Philippines where ordinary home mothers and others are establishing their own laundry shop because they realized that people are searching for this services and people with extra time and money can do it as a part time of full time business at the comfort of their home.
It is almost a part of the Filipino tradition to look for “Labandera” or laundry washer this is a household job that earns a little because of this tradition the enterprising individual dressed up this tradition to make the business a formal services they find it more business like to occupy a small space just suitable enough to accept customers dirty laundry and presently the business has evolve to be a formal laundry shop business in the Philippines just like in other countries. There are still manual laundry services by other people some uses washing machine and there are also coin operated which is becoming more and more of a legal business services and people are accepting the ideas that they are now going in a formal services.
This concept has somehow upgraded more than the business but also the morality and respect of laundry shop industry in the Philippines same with the popularity of junk food and street food that has become a food cart business. Laundry business is now being franchised because of its success in customer’s satisfaction having a good services, warm welcome and warm people is natural for Filipinos that makes laundry shop more appropriate business in this country. Laundry shop has also become a recession proof services because of its affordable price. In considering the local level of customer satisfaction people are aware that laundry service is an accepted demand. In some areas where people living in apartment, condominium and commercial establishment and stores are usually busy with their job that they have no time to do their laundry most of this people trusted their neighbourhood laundry shop, they can even left their clothes and pick it up after washing because they are confident in their services.
This chapter presents details about the methodology adopted and elaborates the chosen research philosophy, approach and strategy used and the reasons for their selection. Further, this chapter describes the sample population and how the primary data was collected and processed. This chapter further explains the data collection tool and highlights validity, authenticity and reliability of the data collected.
A. Research Design
This study will use descriptive survey design in its attempt to determine, describe and analyze relationships between age, gender, occupation and monthly income and the dependent variable which is the customer satisfaction. It tries to find out if the independent variables significantly influence the dependent variable.
The respondents are composed of random people all came from the City of Imus and are regular customers of laundry shops. The sample population is one hundred (100) which are composed of individuals coming from different walks of life who can afford to avail the laundry services. The following respondents will be grouped according their age, gender, occupation and, if possible, according to their monthly income.
C. Research Settings
The study will be conducted in the City of Imus.
D. Instruments Used
Self-developed questionnaire composed of eight (8) items question will be used to measure the Levels of Customer Satisfaction in Laundry Services. The formula of percentage will be used in getting the results.
n = n/100
DATA ANALYSIS & INTERPRETATION
The methodology described in the previous chapter provided the baseline for data gathering. In this chapter, the presentation of data is systematically linked to the format of the self-developed questionnaire attached in the appendix.
A. Demographic Statistics
Question 1: Gender
Graph 1 indicates that there are fifty six (56) percentages for female respondents and forty four (44) percentages for male respondents. As the frequency of graph clearly shows, there is an imbalance between male and female respondents. Female are by far in the majority of percentages over the male respondents.
Question 2: Age
Graph 2 presents the group according to age. The age range of the respondents was from eighteen (18) to fifty four (54) of age. The highest percentage of respondents was from eighteen (18) to twenty four (24) years of age. While for younger than eighteen (18) respondents and those fifty five (55) to sixty four (64) respondents, they got zero (0) percentage.
Question 3: Occupation
Graph 3 indicates that 48 respondents are professionals; 21 respondents are associate professionals; 16 respondents are skilled office, sales and service staff; 11 respondents are college students; 3 respondents are laborers and 1 respondent is unemployed.
B. Descriptive Statistics for Self-designed Questionnaire
Question 1: How often do you go to the laundry shop?
Graph 1 shows the percentage of how the costumers frequently go to the laundry shops. Weekly got the highest percentage, having sixty (60) percent of one hundred and secondly, every two to three (2-3) weeks got twenty eight (28) percentage while every month having twelve (12) percentage got the lowest rank.
Question 2: Reasons why consumer avails laundry services
Graph 2 shows the percentage of the reasons why costumers continuously avail laundry services. Having no time for personal washing got the highest percentage of seventy eight (78) percent and secondly, having less knowledge in washing clothes got twelve (12) percentages and lastly, having less resources for washing / drying clothes reached the lowest rank, ten (10) percentage.
Question 3: What type of laundry services do you frequently use? Graph 3 shows the percentage of the types of laundry services that the consumers frequently use. Wash dry-fold / Wash-dry-press got the highest percentage of seventy (70) percent and secondly, Dry clean / Wet clean got twenty six (26) percentage and lastly, Dry only reached the lowest rank, four (4) percentage.
Question 4: Ratings on consumer’s over-all satisfaction
Graph 4 shows the percentage of the total customer satisfaction in laundry services. Very Satisfied got the highest percentage of fifty four (54) percent and secondly, Somehow satisfied got of thirty (30) percentage and thirdly, Neutral got sixteen (16) percentage lastly, Dissatisfied got zero (0) percentage.
Question 5: How likely are you willing to continue availing laundry services? Graph 5 shows the percentage of how likely the costumers are willing to continue availing laundry services. Very likely got the highest percentage of sixty (60) percent and secondly, Somehow likely got of thirty (30) percentage and thirdly, Neutral get ten (10) percentage lastly, Never will they continue got zero (0) percentage.
Ratings on the following attributes: Price, Quality of Products/Services and Speed of Services
Question 6: Ratings on the following attributes:
Graph 6 shows the ratings on the Price, Quality of Products / Services and Speed of Services of Laundry Shops. First for the Price, Very satisfied: twenty eight (28) percentage; Somehow satisfied: fifty two (52) percentage; Neutral: twenty (20) percentage; Dissatisfied: zero (0) percentage. Secondly, Quality of Products / Services, Very satisfied: thirty two (32) percentage; Somehow satisfied: fifty two (52) percentage; Neutral: sixteen (16) percentage; Dissatisfied: zero (0) percentage. And lastly, Speed of Service, Very satisfied: thirty eight (38) percentage; Somehow satisfied: fifty (50) percentage; Neutral: twelve (12) percentage; Dissatisfied: zero (0) percentage. CHAPTER 5
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The review of literature demonstrates clearly the inter link of customers’ satisfaction with the price and service quality. It is the price and service quality that attracts the customers and makes them loyal to the business. As it has been discussed in the previous chapter, the improved service quality provided to the customers enhances their loyalty to the service provider. That is why the laundry industry has to improve the service quality (Rust & Oliver, 1994). Mullin, Hardy, and Sutton (200) have endorsed the same opinion that the satisfaction is a major outcome of marketing processes that culminate in purchase, and satisfaction is also thought to contribute to post-purchasing phenomena such as word-of-mouth communication, repurchase intention, and brand loyalty.
The results of this study reveal that there are also significant factors relating to age, gender, occupation and the monthly income of the customers which have to be kept in mind while considering customers’ satisfaction. In this particular study, the results reveal that individuals ranging from 18 to 24 years old have more tendencies to avail the laundry services. It may be attributed to the fact that at this stage, people are usually well established and have enough money to spend and avail laundry services. Further, at this stage, people especially the busy ones, wants to spend their time in doing other things like leisure activities or recreational activities. That is why, many people is availing the laundry services to improve their way of life. Further, the results of the study show that professional people opt to avail more than the unemployed, retired or students. Naturally, it is because of the fact that they have enough resources to meet expense of these services. B. Recommendations
As is evident from the results of this study, the service quality is the main factor to attract, satisfy and retain customers for long term purpose. With increasing competition and high expectations of customers, the laundry industry has further to improve the service quality. This could be done through innovations in introducing new services. There are three main factors to be considered more profoundly. The first is the age factor of visitors which show that people ranging from 18 to 24 are frequent customers. Particular services should be introduced considering this age factor.
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