Date of Award

2010

Document Type

Campus Access Thesis

Department

Retailing

First Advisor

Jason M. Carpenter

Abstract

Generation Y shoppers represent a significant percentage of the population, are recognized as an important and distinctive market segment, and demonstrate differences in shopping styles as compared to previous generational cohorts (Pentecost and Andrews, 2010; Bakewell and Mitchell, 2003, TRU, 1999), yet there is a lack of extant patronage research specific to the cohort. While initial steps to understand Generation Y shoppers have been taken (e.g., Seock and Bailey, 2008; Carpenter, Moore, Turner and Joshi, 2005), few extant studies move forward to empirically link shopping orientations to specific patronage behaviors among Generation Y shoppers. This study explores shopping orientations, desired retail attributes and retail format choice among a sample of Generation Y apparel shoppers in the U.S. (N = 215). The research links shopping orientations (e.g., price consciousness, brand/fashion consciousness, brand loyalty) and important retail attributes (e.g., sales staff, atmosphere, service, pricing, product selection, location) to retail format choice within eleven distinct retail formats (upscale department stores, traditional department stores, value department stores, specialty stores, specialty fast fashion stores, discounters, off-price stores, factory outlets, Internet only retailers, mail order catalogs, and television shopping). The findings provide guidance to both academics and retailers with regard to approaching and attracting Generation Y shoppers.

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