Downtown shopping: is it worth the time and effort?

2017-06-08T07:01:14Z (GMT) by Reimers, Vaughan Clulow, Val
The emergence of the internet and a more discerning consumer has created the need for traditional retail centres to provide a more convenient shopping environment. A retail centre offers convenience when it minimises the spatial, temporal and effort costs of shopping. A key means for reducing the temporal and effort costs of patronising a retail centre are through its trading hours and shopping services and amenities. This exploratory study provides insight into the convenience offered by these two attributes across a sample of 25 planned centres and 25 unplanned centres. The findings indicate that the planned centre offers the car-borne shopper a more convenient retail environment. Its extended trading hours not only provide temporal flexibility, but can also reduce shopping effort by allowing consumers to shop during less congested periods. The numerous shopping services and amenities it offers also allows consumers to save time, while reducing the unnecessary expenditure of effort. The findings challenge the notion that the continued growth of planned centres may represent a problem for the disadvantaged consumer.

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