Purpose: This study aimed to better understand the impact of intercultural communication, social environment and personality on customer satisfaction and loyalty in retailing from Muslim customers’ perspective. In this endeavour, this study illustrated the unique context of intercultural communication to highlight several improvements contributing towards the advancement of intercultural communication literature.
Design/methodology/approach:The research adopted a survey approach where 500 questionnaires were obtained among selected grocery retailers in Klang Valley, Malaysia. The measurement of the constructs and their interrelationships were examined based on partial least squares structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM).
Findings:The findings partially validated the proposed framework with statistically significant relationships among all constructs. Furthermore, it exposed additional insights into some practical and conceptual solutions for addressing intercultural communication of religiously and culturally diverse service encounters in the Malaysian grocery retail industry. These contributions postulated an impetus for future research in various service settings.
Originality/value: Based on the theories, the study assessed the role of the social environment of grocery retail customers and their personalities on intercultural communication competence (ICC). This study also examined the impacts of ICC on inter-role congruence and interaction comfort. It is anticipated that by filling this knowledge gap, the research assisted in strengthening retail communication strategies, which require intercultural communication adjustments in a multicultural business environment. ICC is expected to improve the retail industry’s competitiveness when it positively influences inter-role congruence and interaction comfort among customers.
Dr. Ali Ihtiyar