Consumers rituals inside shopping malls : A qualitative study on consumers shopping rituals inside Swedish shopping malls
Abstract: Beyond simple shopping needs, nowadays consumers are continuously looking for the consumption of new experiences. This contemporary consumer request also unveils inside shopping centers, which as scholars recognize, are shifting functionality towards becoming centers for customer engagement.Following this trend, marketers are continuously looking into new ways to increase offer attractivity and consequently spur customer engagement. Rituals represent a possible new lens to study consumer behaviour inside the mall landscape and disclose new hidden consumers' processes for value creation.By conducting a pre-study with two mall managers, we sensed their perspective of the mall and individuated the challenges of shopping centers future development and new consumer shopping trends. In a second phase, we focused on analysing the consumer perspective and utilization of the mall by observing their shopping rituals. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 20 consumers constituting of both Young Professionals and families.In conclusion, different types of rituals were individualized and analysed. By applying rituals to the shopping behaviour of consumers inside shopping malls yielded several insights that resulted to be useful for managers and a valuable contribution to academic research. The results show that mall visitors consume specific rituals inside shopping malls depending on both the target groups (young professionals or families) of consumers as well as the mall experience type (seductive, functional, interactive museum or social). Young Professionals tended to be more spontaneous and socially oriented. However, families tended to shop for functional reasons and often have a planned script of their shopping ritual that they follow throughout their shopping journey at a shopping mall.
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