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Browsing by Author "Ollila, Eeva A. K."

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  • Ollila, Eeva A. K. (2018)
    Consumers’ Perceptions of Price Competition in Grocery Retailing The aim of the present master’s thesis is to study consumers’ perceptions of price competition in grocery retailing and to generate new knowledge about the recent price competition phenomenon through point of views of a very important stakeholder group of grocery retailing. This study will also show up the standpoint of consumers into the debate on the price competition phenomenon. The aim of the thesis is approached with a research question to be supplemented with four sub questions. The research question is, what kind of perceptions do consumers have of price competition in grocery retailing? Sub questions are as follows: How has price competition influenced consumers’ evaluation of price image? How has price competition affected consumers’ behaviour? How has price competition influenced consumers’ perceptions of quality? How do consumers experience price competition as a phenomenon in society? The theoretical framework was constructed from a price competition perspective based on prior research about strategic pricing, pricing strategies and pricing tactics in grocery retailing as well as factors which are intended to affect consumers. The methodology used is qualitative research which was chosen because it was suitable for a purpose of this study. The research data was gathered through thematic interviews in the autumn of 2017. The sample consisted of ten consumers who visit grocery stores in Finland. The interview data was analysed using content analysis. According to the findings the interviewed consumers’ evaluation of the price image of major grocery retailers was more inexpensive than before in consequence of price competition. Price competition had not much affected the interviewed consumers’ behaviour however price sensitivity had increased among them. The interviewees perceived that price-quality relationship in grocery retailing had improved in recent years. The interviewed consumers perceived that the price competition phenomenon of Finland’s grocery retailing was due to consumers’ demand for lower prices and grocery retailers had responded to this to maintain their market shares. Some of the interviewees perceived price competition as unfair to Finnish agricultural producers. The interviewed consumers evaluated that price competition in grocery retailing would continue to some extent in the future.