The concept of value exists back from the days where people begun engaging in exchange activities, however, it was only recently when both academics and practitioners realised the importance of delivering superior value to customers in order to achieve competitive advantage (Ulaga and Chacour, 2001; Khalifa, 2004; Lindgreen and Wynstra, 2005; Hansen et al.,2008). In the following section, a literature review upon the issue of customer perceived value will be performed by looking at the key theories developed in an attempt to address this topic.
There have been various different contributions when it comes down on defining customer perceived value. For example, some academics tend to look upon the issue of creating value from a functional point of view whereas some others prefer to focus mainly on the monetary value of the equation. Nevertheless, despite the relative differences that exist within the various definitions one can identify common grounds between them such as the importance of competition, the multiple components of value and the subjectivity of value perceptions (Eggert and Ulaga, 2002). Broadly speaking, customer perceived value is the difference between the total perceived benefits such as product, service, personnel and image values; and the total perceived costs such as monetary, time, energy and psychic costs (Lapierre, 2000; Kotler and Keller, 2006; McDougall and Levesque, 2000). CPV=Total Benefits (product, service, personnel, image)Total Costs (monetary, time, energy, psychic)
The evolving literature on customer perceived value is concerned with theory and methods of adding value to the customer either by attempting to enhance some, or if possible all of the elements of the perceived benefits shown above; or by trying to reduce the perceived costs of the equation. The different contributions on the attempt of defining customer perceived value that was mentioned earlier on concerns both academics and practitioners; each one of them focusing on different elements of the equation, while acknowledging the existence of the rest of the elements.
Customer Perceived Value: a focus on Personnel, Time, Energy and Psychic elements of the equation
Most academics acknowledge the shift in marketing from a purely transactional to a more of a relationship one (Hollensen, 2010; Grönroos, 2004; Ravald and Grönroos, 1996; Ulaga and Chacour, 2001). As a consequence, some major contributors on the literature of customer perceived value engage upon the issue of value from a relationship point of view. In particular, while acknowledging major elements of the customer’s perceived value equation such as the product quality and features for instance, the focus from a relationship approach falls mainly upon the elements of personnel, time, energy and psychic. Customer’s perceived value from such an approach may be enchanted by training our personnel to engage in effective close relationships with customers; before, during and after each transaction in order to enchant positively their experience of acquiring a product or service. At the same time, this creates opportunities for long term relationships which would consequently, if handled well, develop customer loyalty and reduce the perceived costs of customers by eliminating psychic costs such as their perceived risk of acquiring new products or services; or by reducing time and energy efforts of searching for alternatives. As a result from the above, long term relationships of suppliers with customers is considered to be a key in reinforcing customers perceived value and consequently achieve...