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The Influence of Relationship Characters on Switching Cost: The Moderating Role of Customer Characters

DOI: 10.4236/ajibm.2016.63031, PP. 347-356

Keywords: Switching Costs, Relationship Characteristics, Customer Characteristics, Customer Retention

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Abstract:

With the competitive environment intense, the leader of the market gradually becomes buyers market. For the enterprise, to maintain and retain existing customers, which is to reduce the customer switch to the competition as low as possible, is particularly important. Therefore, how to effectively seize the minds of consumers and understand their behavior trends is the crux for enterprise to win. This study developed a model of the influence of relationship characteristics on switching costs, and we set customer characteristics as a regulated variable which was always set to a leading factor in the previous study. We used smart-phone users as our research object, through the method of questionnaire and established an equation model to analyze data. The results showed that: (1) in general, the relationship characteristics between consumers and businesses (including the length of time and the kind of purchase) respectively played a positive role on the switching costs (including procedural switching costs, relational switching costs and lost benefits costs), (2) the moderating effects of customer characteristics (including involvement and switching tendency) in the relationship between relationship characteristics and switching costs (including the procedural switching costs, relational switching costs and lost benefits costs) are respectively significant. This article verifies the regulated effect of customer characteristics and enriches the antecedent influencing factors of switching costs. So it is of great significance for enterprises to better manage switching costs and effectively retain customers.

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