Impact of Demographic Factors on Store Selection: An Insight in Pakistani Society
Hafiz Kashif Iqbal, Muhammad Mudasar Ghafoor, Saleh Shahbaz
Journal of Marketing Management, 1(1), pp. 34-45.


Retailing is a specialized marketing activity. The ultimate objective of all the marketing efforts is to reach the end consumers with the product and service of their need with a reasonable price which they could easily afford. Retailing supplements the attainment of this objective. Due to the increase in the disposable income along with the technological developments the retail sector is eventually consolidating and the new retail formats are emerging. In this paper, researchers attempt to examine the effect of demographic factors on consumption behavior. Marketers have always been interested in examining the demographic factors. Marketing researchers extensively use the demographic information. Factors like age, household size, gender, income level and social class are considered to be good predictors of consumer buying behavior.

According to (Mendes 1989; Pampel, Fost and O'Malley 1994) those marketers’ can attain the competitive advantage which understands the effect of changing demographic trends on their markets.

Store choice has been a subject of wide research and has been studied from various perspectives. This paper presents the store choice from the point of view of demographic factors. According to Volle (2001), store choice is mostly determined by loyalty. There is an attractive impact of gender on purchase intention. There is also a lot of difference among men and women related to their decision making procedure and emotionalism about purchase intention. Age is another important demographic factor. Old shoppers are more loyal and there is high store loyalty among the people of 25-44 age groups that will be increase with the increase of their age (East, 1995).

Income represent the money which household gets from all sources, it is most important demographical factor that significantly affects the consumption of the consumers, selection of the retail store and their sale volume as well.

If consumers get more income obviously they will spend more and generate high sales/revenues for the retailers (Hasty, 1997). Various studies expressed that, there is association among income and loyalty (Homburg, 2001; Tate, 1961), and some studies don’t support this relationship (East, 1995).

Social class is a combination of income, education and occupation, and these factors are correlated with each other. A good occupation generates good income and by having good income level a household can get better education (Solomon, consumer behavior, 1999) which ultimately has impact on purchase intention. In this study sales promotion plays a moderating role between the demographic factors and consumer retail store selection. It is short term process which motivates and influences the purchase behavior of the customers by offering incentives and interesting creating activities excluding direct marketing, personal selling and publicity.

Retailing in Pakistan and third world countries has traditionally been a small scale business, but in the last few years, the retail sector of Pakistan has shown an incredible change through opening up new retail outlets and introducing the new retail formats as well. The purpose of this research is to analyze the impact of demographic factors on consumer retail store choice along with the moderating role of sales promotion.

Literature Review


There is an attractive impact of gender on purchase intention. There are several issues on the basis of gender differences about their purchase intention like association among gender and time which they spent for shopping something (McDonald, 1994; Arndt, 1977), and impact of gender on unplanned purchase intention (Granbois, 1968; Kollat, 1967). Male are fewer interested and engage in shopping than female. There is also a lot of difference among men and women related to their decision making procedure and emotionalism about purchase intention. Women are more interested and spend more time in shopping and consider it is their basic duty to purchase grocery items for house use and they normally make a purchase on unplanned basis. Women are emotionally involved in shopping and get detailed information about the products and services and their satisfaction manner is also varying from men, and they are more loyal than men (Ndubisi, 2006). In the past marketers consider that male make the primary decision about the purchase of automobile but in the late 1990s more than six out of ten new cars were bought by female and their age was under 50 (Solomon, 1999).

H1: There is a difference in retail store selection among gender.

Household Size

House hold size represent the number of members in a house. There is not sufficient experimental sustain about the association among household size and loyalty so this relation should observe indirectly. House hold size was found to be associated with unplanned purchasing that is positively related with bill size of grocery purchase (Kollat D. T., 1967). If the size of the household will be large then consumption will also be high which may suggest a relationship among the household grocery consumption and loyalty.

According to (Bawa and Ghosh, 1999) the size of a family and its structure infers the overall number of members and the distribution among grown-ups and kids in a family. Bigger families will have higher consumption needs and for the fulfillment of their consumption they will buy more amounts of products and services. In comparison with the smaller families the bigger families want broad range of products and to keep more stock they need to shop more often than the smaller families. (Popkowski Leszczyc, Sinha, and Timmermans, 2000) proposed that bigger families will have more shopping trips and bigger basket sizes.

The current research supports that family size influence the shopping trips in a positive way. Bawa and Ghosh, (1999), in the same way support this phenomenon that the family size has a positive relation with basket size and number of shopping trips. (Prais and Houthakker, 1971; Benus, Kmenta and Shapiro, 1976; McClements, 1977; Muelbauer, 1980) suggested that the shopping basket is also being influenced by the household arrangement. (Carpenter and Moore, 2006) verified that small households are likely to shop at neighborhood markets. The outcome of this discussion is obvious that the family size must be positively associated with a support of supercenters.

H2: There is difference in retail store selections among household sizes.


Age is another important demographic factor. Old shoppers are more loyal and there is high store loyalty among the people of 25-44 age groups (East, 1995). This may be to a certain extent because elders are lesser engage in purchasing activities than other income group and normally they are willing lesser to accept new changes and ambiguity (Straughan, 2001). Old customers are not interested to get detailed and updated information (Wells, 1966).

Older people make a buying decision on the basis of their experience and value of satisfaction which they perceive by utilizing the product and service; however the young people do not rely on the satisfaction which they perceive from the product or service they also get information from the sale personnel and then make final buying decision (Homburg, 2001). With the passage of time the need and preferences of the consumers have been changed, young people spend on fast food normally and old people spend on the products and services related to their health (Solomon, consumer behavior, 1999).

H3: There is difference in retail store selections among age groups.

Income Level:

Income represents the money which household gets from all sources; it is most important demographical factor that significantly affects the consumption of the consumers, selection of the retail store and their sale volume as well. If there is more income of consumers obviously they spend more and generate high sales and profits for the retailers (Hasty, 1997). Various studies expressed that, there is association among income and loyalty (Homburg, 2001; Tate, 1961), and some studies do not find link among them (East, 1995). Income of a household has a significant impact on their purchase decision making process (Zeithaml, 1985). Generally we observe that, people with higher income got higher level of education (Farley, 1964).Higher educated people normally required more information while making a decision (Schaninger, 1981), and who are not higher educated they do not feel the need of more information and rely on a little bit (Capon, 1980; Claxton, 1974). The people who have a good education they looking satisfy while making a purchase decision on the basis of new information (Homburg, 2001).

(Bawa and Ghosh, 1999) found that those families which have high income levels their consumption level would also be high, which indicates more shopping. (Prais and Houthakker 1971; Houthakker and Taylor 1970) researches strengthen the view that consumption is being influenced by the household’s income. This also indicates that their shopping basket will contain those products which are of good quality and this could also be happened that their basket comprises of broad variety of goods. Therefore, the shopping frequency increases with the increase in the income level and with the increase in the income level the products for consumption also expend. (Bawa and Ghosh, 1999) added that households with higher income level have more opportunity cost for time, for the useful consumption of products they will be less willing to spend more time.

It is being expected that the likelihood of occurrence of shopping trips is negatively associated with the household income. Thus the frequency of shopping trips is expected to be negatively related to income of a house hold.

Popkowski Leszczyc and Timmermans (1997) argued that households with high income incline to shop more often. As the opportunity cost increases, the shopping trips turns into versatile shopping trips and the shopper may desire a one stop convenience. (Lal and Rao, 1997) suggested that higher incomes generate the need for higher service as HiLo stores are related with higher service. Shopping in HiLo stores related with the higher incomes.

H4: There is difference in retail store selections among income levels

Social Class

Social class is a combination of income, education and occupation which are most important factors and social class is not determined by any single factor like income or any other but it is the combination of above three factors, and these factors are correlated with each other e.g. a good occupation generate good income and by having good income level a household can get better education (Solomon, consumer behavior, 1999) which ultimately have the impact on their purchase intention.

H5: There is difference in retail store selections among education levels

H6: There is difference in retail store selections among occupation

Store choice / Purchase Intention and Demographics

According to Volle (2001), store choice is mostly determined by loyalty. Inherent loyalty will raise the ‘stickiness’ of the shopper with the store. The shoppers do not hesitate in shopping from the store which is being located at a large distance if he/she for a longer period of time has been patronizing the store (Sinha and Banerjee, 2004). (Bell, Ho, and Tang, 1998) argued that the households should make the group explicit store loyally due to repetitive purchasing from the similar store. In point of fact to the shopper may get some understood value from the usual activities. (Park, Iyer and Smith, 1989) found that the knowledge about the store which is being obtained from previous visits has an impact on the disappointment in consumptions, particularly under time restraints. (Bell, Ho, and Tang, 1998) argued that the cost which incurred in searching of a desired product is also being influenced by the store loyalty.

Though, loyalty with store may also be affected by definite demographic variables. (Popkowski Leszczyc and Timmermans, 1997) found that loyalty for store incurred when the male and the female are working, this trend has also being noticed that those households which possess high income level they exhibit the store switching behavior (Popkowski Leszczyc and Timmermans, 1997). From all this observation researchers take prevailing loyalty as one of the forecasters of store choice.


Questioners were used to collect the data from respondents regarding the role of demographic factors on the retail store selections under the moderating role of Sales Promotions. For this purpose 325 questioners were distributed among the people of different occupations of 26 leading service and manufacturing organizations in Gujranwala, including food or hospitals, telecommunication firms, education and courier and transportation service providers, through stratified random sampling technique.

Gujranwala is the fifth largest city of Pakistan situated in the north east of the Punjab province. Local language is Punjabi but Urdu and English are also spoken and understood. It is an industrial city with well-developed industrial and agricultural markets with about 400 organizations operating and competing in this region. A recent development is the rapid growth in the services sector in this area.

Each of the questioners distributed in this region consists of two sections; one is the demographic section while other is the subjective section. The demographic section comprises of Age, Gender, Education Level, Occupation, Income level and Household size while the subjective portion is composed of purchase intention regarding store selection and Sales Promotion. 10 scale items are mentioned to get the responses from the respondents while a five point Likert scale is used to measure the responses.

All the questions are closed ended for the purpose of collecting appropriate data. Participants were 82% male and 18% female. The response rate remained 79% as 250 of the 325 questionnaires were completed and collected back from the respondents.


Table 1b indicates that mean responses for male and female are close to 3. It seems the gender has no effect on store selection. For level on significance .05 and the Leneve’s equality test of variance shows that P-value 0.163 is greater than level of significance hence results in assuming the variances are equal. The p-value for two samples test of means is also greater than level of significance it means that there is no difference in big-store selection between male and female. Table 2b shows that the P-value of the ANOVA for age is greater than level of significance. Hence null hypothesis is accepted which mean that there is no difference in store selection among people with different education level.

Table 3b shows that the P-value of the ANOVA for education level is less than level of significance. Hence null hypothesis is rejected which mean that there is difference in store selection among people with different education level. In table 4b we can see the ANOVA of our variable “Occupation”. In this analysis the p-value is less than level of significance 0.05 hence rejecting the null hypothesis. And it indicates that there is difference in store selection among persons with different occupations. Table 5b indicates that the p-value for Income Level is less than level of significance 0.05 hence accepting the alternative hypothesis i.e. there is difference in store selection among the people having different income levels. In table 6b ANOVA of household size show that the p-value 0.009 is less than level of significance 0.05 which indicates that difference in household’s size results in selection of different type of retail store.

The table 7b indicates the results of t-test conducted to determine if there exists a significant difference between the purchase intentions of married and unmarried people. It is evident from the results of Levene’s test that we should assume equal variance because p-value “Sig.” is greater than 0.05. Now in the case of t-test with equal variance assumed we can see that p-value is greater than 0.05 which indicates that the mean of two groups is not significantly different. So we conclude that the purchase intention of married people is not significantly different from the purchase intention of unmarried people.


The results indicated that the following demographic factors have impact on store selection:

 Education Level

 Occupation

 Income Level

 Household Size

The factors education, occupation and income level are knows as social class collectively. The results of this study show that the social class has an impact on store selection as the means for store selection of these three variables are significantly different.

The big retail stores involves less interaction with store representative for purchase of products and most stores are based on self-service which requires the search of required product with the help of floor signs and store sections. Illiterate person will find it difficult to search a product in such stores. As literacy rate in Pakistan is low this can be a reason that education level has impact on store selection.

Salaried people are more likely to purchase their monthly grocery in bulk at the start of each month. On the other hand businessmen cash receipts does not have a specific monthly pattern hence they are more likely to purchase their grocery in segment throughout the month. Therefore, occupation has an impact on store selection. People with high income level can afford to buy grocery in bulk for more than a month while people with low income level can only buy the necessary grocery. Thus the income level can affect the store selection decision. The greater the household size, the greater will be amount of grocery. So the household’s size can impact the store selection as buying greater amount of grocery from big stores gives you cost benefits.

The reasons gender doesn’t have impact on store selection may be the male dominancy in Pakistan. Most of the purchases are done by male and female only visit the stores nearby their houses as can be seen in Pakistani culture.

Practical Implications and Future Directions

The retailing structure of Pakistan is changing from small kiryana stores to big stores. This draws attention of marketers to study the retail store choices of different demographic factors to develop their marketing strategies accordingly. This research helps marketers to position their product according to specific demographic factors which affect shopping habit or store choice of the consumers. The study is limited to Gujranwala region the results may be different in various cities of Pakistan so to enhance the generalization of the findings it is proposed to conduct this study in different provinces or regions of Pakistan.

Table1a: Gender
Table 1b: Independent Samples Test
Table 2a: Age
Table 2b: ANOVA
Table 3a: Education Level
Table 3b: ANOVA
Table 4a: Occupation
Table 4b: ANOVA
Table 5a: Income Level
Table 5b: ANOVA
Table 6a: Household Size
Table 6b: ANOVA
Table 7a: Marital Status
Table 7b: Independent Samples Test

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