The importance of retail atmospherics in B2B retailing: the case of BOC

J. Noad, Beth Rogers

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how an industrial retailer used a small-scale study to explore the importance of retail atmospherics in non-consumer retailing and made a considerable contribution to its success. It focuses on the importance of interior and point of purchase retail atmospherics as a sales tool in industrial retailing. It also explores the relevance of previous research findings on atmospherics in business-to-consumer (B2C) retail outlets to the business-to-business (B2B) environment. Design/methodology/approach – The research was carried out using a quantitative questionnaire method using closed questions in a face-to-face interaction with respondents in the case study company’s best-performing B2B retail outlet. Findings – The findings indicate that atmospherics are relevant to B2B retailing, although there are differences in the levels of importance attached to various atmospheric elements. Also, the level of importance of the elements varies with trade customers depending on whether they are participating in a planned purchase, an alternative/substitute purchase (when the planned purchase is not possible), or an impulse purchase. Originality/value – Consumer retailing atmospherics has been subject to considerable examination and proved to be influential in maximising the potential sales of stores. However, industrial (B2B)retailing has been generally overlooked by academic studies. This study not only explores industrial retail buying, but indicates that B2C findings are transferable to some degree and may contribute to improved performance.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1002-1014
    Number of pages13
    JournalInternational Journal of Retail and Distribution Management
    Issue number12
    Publication statusPublished - 2008


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