Can Ethical Business Strategy Influence Consumers’ Buying Behavior and Loyalty: Marks and Spencer PLC?

Kamrul Islam


The project aims to research the impact of ethical business strategy in retail industry. It will primarily focus on one particular aspect of the ethical business strategy, customers’ buying behaviour and loyalty issues. For the purpose of this research a leading retailer, Marks and Spencer will be evaluated, the impact of Ethical Business Strategy (known as Plan A) on its 33.6 million consumers’ base. Literature review suggests ethical business strategy has an impact on consumers and can enable an organisation to achieve sustainable competitive advantages in the long term. A survey was conducted for consumers of Marks and Spencer Simply Food to establish what impact it had on consumer choice. The findings and analysis of survey data highlighted Plan A fails to influence the majority of the consumer’s buying behaviour and loyalty. However it affects between 10% to 12 % consumers that are viewed as ethical consumers by the Business Analyst. As a result of this research, recommendations have been made for Marks and Spencer. As a student researcher in order to meet time constraints and cost, researcher selected to conduct survey in one department of Marks and Spencer, Marks and Spencer Simply Food. The reader will need to take this limitation into account when reading this report, as the outcomes may have been different if various departments were surveyed.

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