Anticipating E-Grocery Services Pre-Purchase Practices: Contrasting Trajectories in Households' Organisation
14th International EIRASS Conference on Recent Advances in Retailing and Services Science, EIRASS, San Francisco, US, June 29 - July 2, 2007
16 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2009 Last revised: 8 Nov 2016
Date Written: June 29, 2007
Supermarkets offer multiple mechanisms to encourage consumers to shop online. Little is, however, available to comprehend household purchasing arrangements, processes and practices before going online. Our theoretical perspective draws on body of research covering areas such as intra-household economy and relationships, consumer decision making process, and retailing. We surmise that, due to the nature of the products/services, e-grocery shopping is, in effect, bringing new complexities for consumers which have yet to be addressed by most retailers' e-strategies. Nowadays, there is simply no single member whom is 'in sole charge of grocery shopping'. New e-grocery pre-purchase procedures should, however, be adapted to the chosen channel. These socially embedded practices should also be understood within the domestic/household context. In this paper, we present the case for a re-conceptualisation of the pre-purchase practices that surround e-grocery. Technology mediated household organisation is reviewed in the context of multiple equipment, diverse technological generations and access types, and household members' geographical locations. We then, provide a theoretical analysis in the perspective of consumers' daily life established social practices and cultural norms and routines, constrained by the repetitive aspects of grocery shopping. Household internal dynamics, coping mechanisms, the need for ever changing experiences are explored. The multifaceted aspects of information gathering and sharing are unpacked including foreseen usage of grocery in specific social circumstances (conspicuity of food consumption) and perspectives (timing, logistic, and alternatives). Critical thresholds in information processing, and household organization are identified. Strategic recommendations are then formulated and plans for future research presented.
Keywords: e-grocery, decision making, household pre-purchase practices
JEL Classification: M30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation