Process modeling of US retail craft buyer decision making

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Brown, Pamela
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Mary A. Littrell
Committee Member
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Textiles and Clothing

The study examines decision making strategies of United States retail craft buyers. Four objectives guided the research: (1) profile craft buyer behavior, (2) describe buyer preferences for U.S. or international craft, (3) compare selection methods for textile crafts to other craft media, and (4) compare findings to existing models of buyer behavior and propose a revised model;Theoretically, the study was based on two models of buyer behavior, Sheth's theory of retail buying and Samli, Grewal, and Mathur s theory of international buyer behavior. A composite model was developed incorporating these theories with available information on craft buyers obtained in interviews and observations during wholesale markets. The components in the proposed model generated the focus of the research inquiry;The research consisted of two stages of investigation. Stage I provided a contextual description of craft retailing for Stage II. The process involved mailing a 14-page questionnaire to a systematic sample of 779 craft buyers in the United States. Conceptual content of the instrument included information on buyers, craft businesses, craft products, customers, and strategies for decision making in wholesale markets. The results were generated from a response rate of 48.7%. Stage II consisted of 45 in-depth telephone interviews with respondents from Stage I. The criteria for sampling were willingness to be interviewed and marketing both U.S. and international craft in the business. The interviews addressed buyer experiences in the business and specific market and craft product decisions. The transcribed interviews were analyzed using the constant comparative method;Results indicate that buyers are diverse in their experiences and approaches to buying craft. Four primary themes (individual perspectives, business environment, global market, and market environment) emerged as the basis for a holistic grounded theory of retail craft buyer behavior. Several subthemes further explain buyer behavior. A revised model of retail craft buyer behavior illustrates the penetrating influence of the individual in buying decisions. The research contributes new concepts to existing buyer behavior. Recommendations are made for future research.

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Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 1995