• ISSN: 2155-7950
  • Journal of Business and Economics

Traits of Urban Middle Class Consumers in India — Satisfaction and

Loyalty Observed from Eat-out Experiences


Naoki Nagashima1, Yoshie Nagashima2
(1. Toyo University, Japan; 2. Daito Bunka University, Japan)
Abstract: India is an attractive market. Middle class people living in cities are growing rapidly in number, and their life styles are becoming westernized. In this regard, many foreign corporations are conducting research on business environment, such as regulations, tax systems, infrastructures, and potential competitors. However, from the perspective of marketing, understanding target consumers should also be important. Keeping these backgrounds in mind, this study addresses consumer behavior of urban middle class consumers in India who seek opportunities to eat out. Based on questionnaire surveys regarding their experiences at restaurants and coffee shops, in this paper, we examined their loyalty and satisfaction, relationship between these two, and determinants of satisfaction. Major findings include, (1) customer satisfaction directly leads to improved loyalty, and (2) overall satisfaction is influenced by more than 13 factors. These findings are in sharp contrast to the ambiguous and elusive behaviors of Japanese consumers. This study, therefore, suggests an opportunity for foreign food industries in terms of entering Indian middle class market. This result indicates the necessity to expand the focus on consumers to be targeted rather focusing solely on business environment. Furthermore, this “Satisfaction-loyalty approach” works as part of “Feasibility studies” to explore business possibilities in foreign markets.
Key words: India; consumer behavior; food service business; customer satisfaction; loyalty
JEL code: M3

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