Rural Consumer, Rural India, Store Categorization, Retail Formats


The rural population of India is about 70.2% of the total population. Close to 137,747,384 households reside in more than 0.6 million villages in India. In the last decade spending power of this rural population has been increasing and its attitude and lifestyle have undergone significant alterations. As a result of these transformations, the retail habits and store patronage behavior of the population is also changing. Although retailing in India has traditionally been an unorganized sector, especially in rural markets, that is changing as well. This study focuses on existing retail formats in rural markets in India. The study has two goals: to develop a classification system for these retail formats and then to examine the preferences of segments within the current rural Indian population for the different types of retail formats. Specifically, the following research questions are addressed: What are the categories of retail stores available in rural markets? Are there descriptors that identify segments which vary in preference across the retail store categories identified? The study helps understanding of the different types of formats existing in the rural markets and the characteristics of segments who patronize the various formats, which can ultimately be helpful to classify the retail stores into different categories for the purpose of systematic study and analysis in the future. This will be extremely helpful to the industry looking at the fast changing pre

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