This paper examines the shortcomings of the existing literature on retailer buying behaviour and discusses the potential contribution of studying retailer buying behaviour from a sensemaking perspective. A new conceptual framework for understanding retailer buying behaviour is outlined. It is argued that sensemaking related to retailer buying behaviour can be analysed at several, inter-related levels of analysis. The framework developed draws on discussions of sensemaking within strategic management and organisation science and discusses how concepts such as organisational identity, image, noticing, interpretation, action and attribution may be useful for understanding retailer buying behaviour. Some key research questions emanating from this discussion are suggested and a methodology is proposed for studying these research questions. Finally, practical implications and theoretical shortcomings are discussed briefly.
Purchasing and Supply Topics at the Turn of the Millenium. 3, 2001, p. 11-28