STORE TYPE PATRONAGE FOR GROCERY
STORE TYPE PATRONAGE FOR
GROCERY PURCHASES: A STUDY
OF THE QUEBEC MARKET
by JoAnne LABRECQUE
Cahier de recherche no 93-003R
ISSN : 1181-9383
JoAnne Labrecque is Assistant Professor at École des Hautes Études Commerciales (HEC)
Copyright © 1993. La Chaire de commerce Omer DeSerres, École des Hautes Études Commerciales (HEC), Montréal. Tous droits réservés pour tous pays.
Toute traduction ou toute reproduction sous quelque forme que ce soit est interdite.
Les textes publiés dans la série «Les Cahiers de recherche de la Chaire de commerce Omer DeSerres» n'engagent que la responsabilité de leurs auteurs.
La publication de ce cahier a été rendue possible grâce aux fonds de la Chaire de commerce Omer DeSerres, établi suite à une donation de Roger
DeSerres, des contributions du Ministère de l'Industrie, du Commerce et de la Technologie (MICT), et du Ministère de l'Enseignement Supérieur et de la Science
Distribué par la Chaire de commerce Omer DeSerres, École des Hautes Études Commerciales, 5255 avenue Decelles, Montréal (Québec) Canada H3T 1V6.
Store type patronage for grocery purchases: A
study of the Quebec market
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STORE TYPE PATRONAGE FOR GROCERY PURCHASES:
A STUDY OF THE QUEBEC MARKET
Do shoppers choose shopping patterns which include more than one store type to complete
their household weekly grocery purchases? To answer this question, an indirect utility model is
used. The model includes the notion that in addition to household characteristics, shopper time
value and shopper preferences for store attributes affect costs and benefits derived from
shopping at different store types. To test the model, a choice variable including different shopping patterns is estimated using the Multinomial Logit model. The results from empirical
estimation show that, to complete their weekly household grocery purchases, shoppers use
different shopping patterns including some patterns with more than one store type. The results
also indicate that shopper preferences for store attributes, household characteristics, and
shopper traits affect the probability of choosing a specific pattern.
Store type patronage for grocery purchases: A study of the Quebec market
In Quebec, as in the rest of Canada and the United States, the last thirty years have been characterized
by significant demographic changes. The proportion of married women in the labor force has
progressively increased; the average family gross income has increase, the average number of persons
per household has significantly decreased; and the average level of education has increased (Labrecque,
1991). These changing household demographics have changed household time and money constraints.
They have also changed the composition of food shoppers. Males, working females and singles frequent
supermarkets in larger numbers than in the past (Zeithaml, 1985; Donegan, 1986).
At the same time, the structure of the American and Canadian food retail industries has changed
significantly. From uniform industries characterized by reasonably standardized stores, these industries
evolved to include various new store types, such as combination stores, hypermarkets, warehouse stores,
super warehouse stores and wholesale membership clubs (Tigert, 1980; Heller, 1986). Directly
competing with the conventional supermarket for the consumers' food dollars, these new store types have
enlarged the consumers choice set, offering them more flexibility.
Together, the demographic changes and the changes in the midst of the different food retail industries
have changed the value of the parameters which affect how households organize their grocery shopping
activities. For example, to adjust to their more severe time constraint, households now benefit from new
shopping alternatives which allow them to shop for various product categories on a same store visit, to
shop during extended hours on weekdays, or to shop at stores that offer a good selection of ready-to-eat
Marketers have paid little attention to the effect of these changes on the organization of household
grocery shopping activities. Some research has been done on the impact of demographic changes on
specific aspects of shopping activities that relate to grocery purchases (Zeithaml, 1985; Kolodinsky,
1990). However, no research has studied whether households have adjusted their grocery shopping
activities to benefit from the different values offered by the different store types.
This paper investigates whether or not, following a greater diversification of store types, households
chose to patronize stores of different types to complete all of their major grocery purchases for a given
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