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Abstract

Electronic food retailers can satisfy their customers more effectively if they understand how this particular market works. As in other service segments, the emergence of electronic business-to-customer services in the retail food industry poses questions for managers about the design of new food retailing services and the redesign of existing services for delivery through electronic channels. Important topics include characteristics of electronic service offerings, the typical operational configurations used to deliver electronic services, and the ways in which they relate to the effectiveness of electronic service delivery. We address this issue by developing a product-process matrix for understanding and analyzing electronic retailing services in general. We tailor the matrix to food retailing in particular. The product-process matrix allows electronic food retailers to determine in advance what features they need in a web site to serve their chosen market effectively.

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