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Consumer Perceptions of Interpersonal Equity and Satisfaction in Transactions: A Field Survey Approach

Richard L. Oliver and John E. Swan
Journal of Marketing
Vol. 53, No. 2 (Apr., 1989), pp. 21-35
DOI: 10.2307/1251411
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1251411
Page Count: 15
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Consumer Perceptions of Interpersonal Equity and Satisfaction in Transactions: A Field Survey Approach
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Abstract

Automobile purchasers were surveyed about feelings toward their inputs to and outcomes from the sales transaction, as well as their perceptions of the inputs and outcomes of the salesperson. Structural equation modeling with maximum likelihood estimation shows two concepts advanced in the equity literature, fairness and preference (advantageous inequity), to be related differentially to input and outcome judgments. No necessary symmetry is observed between the weights attached to inputs and outcomes or between those attached to self and salesperson. When framed in a larger perspective involving satisfaction with the salesperson, the fairness dimension mediates the effect of inputs and outcomes on satisfaction whereas preference does not. The fairness influence is robust against the simultaneous inclusion of disconfirmation in the satisfaction equation. Satisfaction, in turn, is related strongly to the consumer's intention cognitions. The findings suggest that the retail sales transaction may differ in substantive ways from the subject-peer and worker-coworker comparisons in other disciplines and that models of interpersonal satisfaction in the sales transaction should include the mediating effect of the fairness dimension of equity. The managerial implications of these findings are discussed.

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