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Electronic commerce in the food retail industry: a case study comparison of virtual grocers' and virtual meal retailers' strategies and business processes

Kaufman, Jill Harbin (2000) Electronic commerce in the food retail industry: a case study comparison of virtual grocers' and virtual meal retailers' strategies and business processes. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86203) (KAR id:86203)


This research focused on an emerging area of virtual retailing in the food retail industry. There is a paradigm shift in the way consumers are interacting with retailers within fundamental business processes due to the exploitation of new virtual retail channels. It reports on the results of an investigation of strategies and business processes of virtual food retailers. The research was based on intensive case study interviews. An objective of this research was to provide a deeper understanding of the key issues for successful implementation of business-to consumer e-commerce. An additional focus was to examine what changes are needed to the traditional concepts of service marketing to address e commerce. The cases' were analyzed within the context of the marketing mix 7Ps. There were differences in the approach of brick food retailers who added a virtual retail channel and virtual only food retailers as described in the analysis. There were also differences in the business process strategies between intermediaries and in-house implementation virtual retailers. This research found that the e-food retailers must address the fundamental business aspects presented by the 7Ps. These business fundamentals are not "thrown out the door" in the virtual world; however, to utilize the virtual tools effectively the 7Ps need to be viewed through a new lens. Two original contributions from this research are the Virtual Order Cycle and the discovery of a new sub-segment of E-commerce called Local E-commerce

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86203
Additional information: This thesis has been digitised by EThOS, the British Library digitisation service, for purposes of preservation and dissemination. It was uploaded to KAR on 09 February 2021 in order to hold its content and record within University of Kent systems. It is available Open Access using a Creative Commons Attribution, Non-commercial, No Derivatives ( licence so that the thesis and its author, can benefit from opportunities for increased readership and citation. This was done in line with University of Kent policies ( If you feel that your rights are compromised by open access to this thesis, or if you would like more information about its availability, please contact us at and we will seriously consider your claim under the terms of our Take-Down Policy (
Uncontrolled keywords: e-commerce, usiness Processes, Marketing Mix, 7Ps, Virtual Grocers,Virtual Meal Retailers, Virtual Retailing, Food Retail Industry, Local ECommerce
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Divisions: Divisions > Kent Business School - Division > Department of Leadership and Management
SWORD Depositor: SWORD Copy
Depositing User: SWORD Copy
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2019 16:34 UTC
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2022 12:39 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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