The Influence of Religiosity on the Shopping Orientation of Muslims in Karachi

Shaikh, Ayesha Latif1; Rahman, Dr. Mustaghis-ur-1
1Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology, Indus University, Karachi;

Abstract: Religion as a component of culture impacts people's values, attitudes and lifestyles which are subsequently reflected in behavior as consumers. In this research we examine the effect of religiosity on consumer behavior of the Muslims living in Karachi. Since 84% of Pakistan's population perceives themselves as religious it is important to find if there exists a relationship between religiosity and shopping orientation in Pakistan. This research tested the significance of relationship between Religiosity (perceived strength of religiosity, intrapersonal and interpersonal religiosity) and Shopping Orientation (brand/fashion/quality consciousness and shopping enjoyment). The research was focused on the readymade garments market. Worthington's (2003) Religious Commitment Inventory (RCI-10) was adopted to assess Religiosity. The scale by Shamsadani, Hean & Lee (2001) was adopted to measure Shopping Orientation. A sample was purposively selected of men and women, aged 20 plus, living in Karachi, educated till secondary level or more and affiliated with Islamic educational institutes. Respondents' data was collected via structured questionnaire-based survey. The findings are that religious respondents have moderately low fashion consciousness and brand consciousness and they are indifferent towards quality. Shopping enjoyment is moderately low in the sampled group. Religiosity is significantly but negatively related to overall shopping orientation. Specifically, perceived strength of religiosity and intra-personal religiosity are significantly and inversely related to brand and fashion consciousness and also to shopping enjoyment. It is recommended that brands which target religious people for e.g. religious clothing brands should not portray themselves as fashionable because strongly religious people have lower inclination to follow fashion. Lastly, retail outlets, malls and departmental store should conduct exploratory studies to discover how to improve the shopping experience for religious people too. This can be very important in view of the ever-present social phenomena of religious people being opinion leaders in society in general.

Keywords: Religiosity; shopping orientation; ready-made garments; Pakistan.