A study of life events and changes in patronage preferences
Retail patronage studies usually attempt to profile and understand loyal customers. This paper presents a study of changes in patronage preferences. Based on theory and research, it is proposed that changes in patronage preferences and development of patronage orientations are the result of life events that serve as markers of life transitions. These life events create new consumption needs and are stressful because they create demand for readjustment. People are likely to change their patronage preferences as they attempt to change their consumption lifestyles to cope with stressful life changes and satisfy new consumption needs. The data support these notions and suggest implications for retailers. © 2001 Elsevier Science Inc.