Munich Personal RePEc Archive

What Drives Client Satisfaction at Non-profit Thrift Stores?

Wodon, Divya and Wodon, Naina and Wodon, Quentin (2013): What Drives Client Satisfaction at Non-profit Thrift Stores?


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While thrift stores are associated with the idea of thrift, it does not follow that they attract only clients with limited resources who are highly price sensitive. Today thrift stores are becoming less stigmatized and are attracting middle class clients and the better off as well. This suggests that beyond low prices, the clientele may be sensitive to other aspects of the thrift store experience, including good old customer service. The purpose of this paper is to measure and assess the drivers of client satisfaction using quantitative and qualitative data. The paper relies on a client survey implemented among the clientele of Martha’s Outfitters, a highly successful non-profit thrift store located in Washington, DC, in order to assess through basic statistics, regression analysis, as well as responses to open ended questions what drives the high level of satisfaction observed among the clientele. The results suggest that the principal factor leading to high satisfaction among the clientele is the quality of the store’s customer service. Low prices, variety in the available stock of merchandize, quality of the available merchandize, and convenience (including in terms of location) also play a role, but a less important one.

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