Bernhard Swoboda

Universität Trier, Trier, Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany

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Publications (114)35.16 Total impact

  • Bernhard Swoboda · Julia Weindel · Frank Hälsig
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although retailers increasingly seek to position themselves as strong, attractive, and unique brands, little is known about differences in retail branding among different retail sectors. This study analyzes the importance of perceived retail attributes for consumer-based retail brand equity (RBE), particularly the varying roles of these attributes in important retail sectors, and the effects of RBE on intentional loyalty. The authors examine empirical data on 2112 consumer evaluations of retail firms in the grocery, fashion, electronics, and DIY sectors and apply multi-group structural equation modeling. The results indicate that the importance of retail attributes for RBE varies among the different sectors, but a strong and stable link between RBE and consumers' intentional loyalty is evident across retail sectors. The sector-specific and cross-sectoral observations in this study provide managers with specific knowledge on the main levers of RBE in different retail contexts.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2016 · Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Julia Weindel · Hanna Schramm-Klein
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Understanding consumer behavior across channels is the fundamental basis for implementing successful multichannel retailing strategies. This study analyzes the crosswise and reciprocal relationships between offline and online brand beliefs, offline and online retail brand equity and consumers’ conative loyalty to a retailer in multichannel structures. The relationships are contextualized by investigating fashion and grocery retail sectors and different prior channel performances that are likely to affect the paths to loyalty across channels. To provide insight into these issues, two cross-sectional and two longitudinal models are employed. The results show that former brick-and-mortar retailers are able to significantly increase consumers’ loyalty to the firm by primarily designing offline (secondary online) attributes and beliefs. The results hold for retailers in both fashion and grocery retailing, however, with stronger effects in fashion, as well as for retailers with strong vs. weak prior channel performance. However, indirect effects indicate that online brand beliefs and offline retail brand equity are the central strategic levers for prior strong (vs. weak) retailers. Reciprocal relationships between online and offline retail brands underline important channel interdependencies. Managers thus need to take these crosswise and reciprocal interdependencies between channels into account when designing successful multichannel retailing systems. This study introduces the novel idea of simultaneous crosswise and reciprocal relationships within multichannel retail structures and shows that paths to loyalty vary for retailers in different retail sectors and retailers with strong vs. weak offline and online channel performances.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2016 · The International Review of Retail Distribution and Consumer Research
  • Matthias Schu · Dirk Morschett · Bernhard Swoboda
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Numerous examples of online retailers that have internationalized shortly after their foundation indicate that they internationalize faster than and different from traditional brick-and-mortar retailers. This paper identifies and analyzes various influence factors on internationalization speed of online retailers and their impact on individual internationalization steps. Grounded in the resource-based view, the paper examines the effects of imitability of an online shop, the presence of venture capitalists, the scope of the country portfolio and distance and diversity within the country portfolio on the internationalization speed of online retailers. A Cox proportional hazards model is used to explore the effects on speed and their variations over time. Drawing on a sample of 150 online retailers (1110 market entries in 47 country markets over 19 years), this study shows significant curvilinear effects of the imitability of an online shop, as well as of the diversity and scope of the existing country portfolio and linear effects of the distance of new country markets on the length of time until the next internationalization step.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2016 · Management International Review
  • No preview · Article · Feb 2016 · International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Cathrin Puchert · Dirk Morschett
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although multinational corporations increasingly use their reputation as an important differentiation criterion, little is known about the varying effects of corporate reputation in an international context. In this study, the effects of corporate reputation across nations, particularly the moderating role of important institutional country differences, are analyzed. To provide insight into these issues, the authors refer to hierarchical data on 13,665 consumer evaluations of a multinational corporation in 40 countries. The results indicate a strong link between corporate reputation and consumers’ loyalty, but this relationship is reinforced or diminished by cultural, economic, or knowledge differences between countries. These moderators represent important factors when managing corporate reputations across nations.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science
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    Bernhard Swoboda · Cathrin Puchert · Dirk Morschett
    No preview · Dataset · Jul 2015
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Retail brand perception, store image, and even the positioning of retail firms have been examined frequently in research for many years. Studies analyzing retail formats on the basis of retailer attributes perceived in a particular retail sector are, however, relatively rare (Morschett et al. 2006). The present study provides a fairly unique perspective so far because it does not deal with retail formats in well-known Western and more or less saturated markets, but with analyzing the store image of retail formats in the context of one grocery retailing market in Eastern Europe.
    Full-text · Chapter · Jun 2015
  • Hanna Schramm-Klein · Dirk Morschett · Bernhard Swoboda
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to knowledge on the impact of corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities on retailers’ performance. An analysis using a comprehensive conceptualization of CSR reveals that CSR has positive implications for retailers’ firm performance and illustrates which CSR dimensions are the most important to focus on. It becomes clear that retailers must care about both downstream- and upstream-oriented CSR dimensions in the value chain. The paper highlights the impact of CSR communication activities for company success both in terms of general communication to the stakeholders and relating to in-store communications. Design/methodology/approach – The authors conducted a survey among retailers. Data analysis was performed applying partial least squares structural equation modeling. Findings – While CSR generally has positive effects on retailer performance – despite cost associated with CSR implementation, the authors show that diverse dimensions have different effects. Also, both downstream (customer-oriented) as well as upstream (suppler-oriented) activities count. Also, CSR communications, thus talking about what good a retailer does, is of high relevance. Originality/value – This paper offers both theoretical implications on CSR dimensions in retailing as well as practical help for retailers on how and why to implement and communicate CSR activities.
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Thomas Foscht
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This paper analyses co-operation from the perspective of 98 traditional fashion retailers and 104 manufacturers. Based on specific approaches, one purpose was to evaluate how market and supply chain oriented value chain activities are viewed in the context of co-operation, particularly in terms of own competence, perceived potential for co-operation, and the level of co-operation achieved. We postulated that retailers and manufacturers see co-operation potentials in value chain activities with both low and high levels of own competence, and that the co-operation potentials identified and the co-operation levels achieved also may differ. A second purpose addresses the relation between the co-operation levels achieved in the value chain activities and the degree of success in turnover, costs, and time-to- market.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2015
  • C. Schröder · B. Swoboda
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Christoph Schröder does one of the first attempts to analyze format transfers within the scope of different strategies, format elements, countries and success with focus on the fashion industry. Three distinct format transfer strategies are identified. The empirically observed design of format elements supports and extends the existing research. Fashion firms standardize their "Retail culture", which acts as a foundation for a successful format transfer strategy (core elements). New insights are provided with regard to format transfer into foreign countries as well as over a timeframe of five years. International retailers face specific challenges with regard to the decision on their retail format abroad, which is known as an important success driver. They may transfer their format elements unchanged or may adapt those elements. One successful strategy is known to be an unchanged format replication, which is linked to the fashion industry.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2015
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Christoph Seibel · Andrea Schlüter
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study examines the effect of strategic and structural design elements of global account management (GAM) on GAM performance in the consumer goods sector. These effects are considered within the context of different international marketing strategies (IMS). Hypotheses based on resource dependence theory and transaction cost theory address the effectiveness and efficiency of GAM organisation. Concerning the GAM strategy, the impact of intensity, proactivity and standardization on GAM performance are studied. Regarding the GAM structure, the influence of centralization, specialization and formalization are analysed. Additionally, the varying importance of the structural and strategic aspects in the light of different IMSs is hypothesised. The hypotheses are tested with a survey of 172 manufacturers and with structural equation models. The results demonstrate that GAM structural design elements determine GAM performance more strongly than strategic design elements. GAM centralization is identified as a primary determinant of GAM performance. However, GAM structure and strategy determine GAM performance differently for manufacturers with more standardised vs. adapted IMSs. With a more adapted IMS the strategic aspects gain in importance.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2015
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Karin Pennemann
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aggressive internationalization and diversification of service organizations, especially retailers, has been accompanied by a dearth of research on the advantages of establishing relations among corporate, store and product brands across countries. To address this lack of information, this study examines the reciprocity of retailer’s corporate image and store image as well as the moderating roles of culture-specific and firm-specific factors. Based on the accessibility-diagnosticity theory, we hypothesize that the two images are connected through feedback loops, where the store image has a greater degree of influence on the corporate image than vice versa. Furthermore, we hypothesize that the variation in the reciprocal effects of the corporate and store images is explained by consumers’ culture-specific evaluation approaches and corporate brand dominance. Based on experiments conducted in a country with an analytical style of thinking and a country with a holistic style of thinking as well as an experiment considering a fictitious retailer, the results from the non-recursive models indicate that the two images interact throughout several cycles of the feedback loop. Moreover, the degree of reciprocity is enhanced by the consumers’ holistic thinking and perceptions of a firm’s branding strategy. Managers should take note of these important reciprocal relations because although they manage retail brands across different organizational levels, for consumers, the store image is more important than the corporate image. Moreover, the reciprocity of the corporate and store images provides greater benefits in predominantly holistic Asian countries than in analytic western countries.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2015
  • Thomas Foscht · Bernhard Swoboda · Hanna Schramm-Klein
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Zu weiteren Determinanten und Moderatoren des Käuferverhaltens – die (im Schalenmodell) die psychischen Prozesse determinieren, aber weiter vom Verhalten entfernt sind – zählen insb. die Umweltdeterminanten des Käuferverhaltens, also die psychische Umwelt, die Determinanten der näheren Umwelt, insb. Primärgruppen, Sekundärgruppen und Familie als unmittelbare nähere soziale Umwelt und die Determinanten der weiteren Umwelt, insb. Kultur, Subkultur und soziale Schicht.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2015
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Even though it is by no means a new idea, corporate social responsibility (CSR) is of high topicality both in business practice across all in-dustries and in the academic literature. An impressive body of research has addressed the impact of CSR activities on corporate perform-ance, for example, with a focus on the company market value or financial performance (see Orlitzky, Schmidt, and Rynes 2003 and Wu 2006 for meta-analyzes). Anyhow, despite the number of studies on this particular relationship, there still is a limited understanding of whether and how CSR actions have a positive impact on firm performance (Luo and Bhattacharya 2006). Only few studies have analyzed the role of CSR in retailing in a comprehensive manner. With our study, we address the question whether and how CSR activities of retailers contribute to retailers performance.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2015
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Stefan Elsner · Dirk Morschett
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study examines the international strategies of retailers that have been internationalising aggressively, especially since the 1990s. By applying the Integration-Responsiveness (I-R) framework, we hypothesise that retailers use all four strategies (international, global, multinational and transnational) but that their preferences for these strategies vary across retail sectors (food and non-food). From the inter-sector-based and sector-specific perspectives, we also hypothesise that the strategies correspond to different levels of performance. Based on extensive pre-tests, in-depth face-to-face interviews with 112 executives in 90 retailing firms' headquarters and a two-tailed measurement of the framework dimensions, the results support most of our hypotheses. Thus, for both scholars and managers, this study provides, for the first time, empirical insights into successful international strategies for retailers.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2014 · Long Range Planning
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Stefan Elsner · Edith Olejnik
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study analyzes whether the preferred entry modes, i.e., the foreign market entry modes that have been most frequently used in the past, influence a retail firm's subsequent mode choices. We discuss the limitations of this relationship by highlighting the external and internal factors that determine the effects of preferred modes on later entry decisions. To provide insight into these issues, we refer to institutional- and knowledge-based reasoing and use a data set that includes 309 market entries by the 30 leading retailers between the years 1960 and 2008. The results indicate that preferred entry modes show strong explanatory power with regard to the subsequent choice of full- and shared-control modes in entering new country markets. Although this relationship is diminished by the external institutional environment (e.g., political distance), firm-specific capabilities, e.g., international experience and internationalization speed, reinforce the use of preferred entry modes.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · International Business Review
  • Bernhard Swoboda · Edith Olejnik
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Previous research on the internationalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) has highlighted the role of knowledge and learning about foreign markets. However, empirical results on the performance implications of foreign market scanning and planning have been mixed. Following the dynamic capability perspective, we argue that SMEs can capitalize on scanning and planning processes because of their international entrepreneurial orientation. We test our hypotheses with a sample of 604 established SMEs and find that entrepreneurial orientation completely mediates the relationship between scanning and planning and international performance. Moreover, the results implicate a bidirectional relationship between processes and international entrepreneurial orientation.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2014 · Journal of Small Business Management
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    Bernhard Swoboda · Bettina Berg · Dan-Cristian Dabija
    Full-text · Dataset · Jul 2014
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    Bernhard Swoboda · Bettina Berg · Dan-Cristian Dabija
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study emphasizes the important but neglected role of retail formats in the transfer and positioning decisions of international retailers. We examine the role of core and country-specific attributes of particular formats in determining retailers’ local positioning in inter-format competition. Focusing on three distinguished grocery formats (i.e., discounters, supermarkets, and hypermarkets) and using multiple-group structural equation models, we conducted consumer surveys in Germany and Romania to evaluate consumer perceptions of the core attributes of those formats and their influence on retail brand equity and consumer loyalty. Findings – Although consumer perceptions of core attributes differ between formats in Germany and Romania, most of the core attributes of the formats affect retail brands with equal strength in both markets. Retail brand equity determines loyalty to all formats in both countries. Research implications – Retailers transferring their formats to foreign countries should place particular emphasis on managing the core attributes of a specific format, as these attributes are of paramount importance in establishing a strong brand. Additional country-specific attributes are also relevant to varying extents, depending on the particular format that is used. Assessing causal relationships extends retailer knowledge of the role of format attributes. Originality/value – This study proposes a format-specific approach that is novel to international retailing research. The country comparison strengthens the study’s implications, considers both a developed and an emerging economy, and accounts for the preference of Western European retailers to expand into Eastern European countries. We conclude that format transfer and positioning decisions occur within the boundaries of core format attributes
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · International Marketing Review
  • Marion Brandstätter · Bernhard Swoboda · Thomas Foscht
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Im Rahmen der Kommunikation der Hersteller mit dem Handel können zahlreiche Kommunikationsinstrumente und -maßnahmen zum Einsatz kommen, so die klassische Mediawerbung oder die Online-Kommunikation, Verkaufsgespräche, Jahresvereinbarungen, Preis- und Konditionenverhandlungen oder gesamte Kommunikationskampagnen, die beispielsweise von Kontraktgebern für Vertragshändler konzipiert werden, und von Letzteren umgesetzt werden (müssen). Welche Kommunikationsinstrumente und -maßnahmen der Hersteller für die Kommunikation mit dem Handel vordergründig nutzt, hängt dabei nicht zuletzt den Ebenen der Zusammenarbeit bzw. dem Typ der Hersteller-Handels-Beziehung ab. Deshalb thematisiert der Beitrag Kommunikationsinstrumente und -maßnahmen im Kontext der drei zentralen Typen von Hersteller-Handels-Beziehungen – nämlich den marktlichen Transaktionen, den Kooperationen und der partiellen bzw. vollständigen vertikalen Integration.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2014