Managing Retail Consumption

Managing Retail Consumption

Managing Retail Consumption

Managing Retail Consumption


Managing Retail Consumption locates retailing in its social context and develops the position that retailing can be regarded as a site of consumption, identity, creation and pleasure. It develops a consumption perspective which provides a balanced approach between management and the social sciences. The consumption perspective considers the way retail sites are created or manipulated with a view to understanding the interplay between the provider's requirements and the consumer's ability to manage, structure and edit their repertoire of responses.

The text looks at how retailing works and examines the narrative nature of retailing: how it can tell a story, be playful, and form a major element in the consideration of management of retail operations. It also examines retail in its social context including examples and cases of numerous well known companies such as Tesco, Next and Galleries Lafayette.


This book has been written to provide those studying retailing with a text that explores some of the area's more specialized issues. In doing this, it breaks away from the nature of much of the traditional retail literature that takes a necessarily instructional perspective. This book, though, stems from a much more interdisciplinary viewpoint; and, rather than primarily focusing on the retailer, considers shopping from both the customer's and the retailer's perspectives.

Without understanding its customers' attitudes and involvement with the shopping experience, it would, at best, seem difficult for a retailing organization to provide an engaging and appropriate offer. Although, as a core tenet of marketing, this would seem an obvious notion, as far as we are aware, there has been little attempt to provide material that brings both perspectives together.

This book therefore also represents the authors' belief that there is a gap between the existing retail literature, with its managerial slant, and the consumption literature, which – being based in the socio-cultural tradition often ignores those organizational issues of concern to retailers.

In bridging these divides – which are clearly related – the book's focus is on the store as a point of interaction, where retailers and customers create and play-out the retail encounter in all its forms.

Because of this focus on the store as a physical meeting point, the book does not explore Internet-based retailing provision in any great depth – although many of the issues discussed here are as relevant in a virtual context as they are in a concrete setting.

The notion of retailing as a meeting point for customer and retail providerboth in a social context and in terms of fulfilling the needs of both parties – is . . .

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