CiteWeb id: 20130000115

CiteWeb score: 1468

Relationship marketing emphasizes the need for maintaining long-term customer relationships. It is beneficial, in general, to serve customers over a longer time, especially in a contractual relationship. However, it is not clear whether some of the findings observed in a contractual setting hold good in noncontractual scenarios: relationships between a seller and a buyer that are not governed by a contract or membership. The authors offer four different propositions in this study and subsequently test each one in a noncontractual context. The four propositions relate to whether (1) there exists a strong positive customer lifetime-profitability relationship, (2) profits increase over time, (3) the costs of serving long-life customers are less, and (4) long-life customers pay higher prices. The authors develop arguments both for and against each of the propositions. The data for this study, obtained from a large catalog retailer, cover a three-year window and are recorded on a daily basis. The empi...