Measuring Dimensions of Purchaser Trust of Industrial Salespeople

Swan, John E.; Trawick Jr., I. Fred; Rink, David R.; Roberts, Jenny J.
May 1988
Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management;May88, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p1
Academic Journal
The article discusses the importance of trust in buyer-salesperson relationships. Trust would be important to the extent that it was a critical attribute in buyer choice between competing salespeople. A strong case for the importance of trust in personal selling is supported by general work in sociology as well as research that is specific to buyer-seller relationships. There is ample evidence of the importance of trust in shaping the behavior of individuals toward each other. Work that is specific to buyer-seller behavior also supports the importance of trust in personal selling. The basic argument is that trust greatly facilitates the exchange process. Mistrust causes the buyer to take steps to protect his interests, such as seeking recommendations of others who have dealt with the salesperson. Mistrust takes time and effort on the part of both the buyer and salesperson to overcome. Empirical research has indicated that trust is important in buyer-seller relationships. The essence of industrial buyer trust of a specific salesperson is that the buyer is dependent on what the salesperson has said or promised. The buyer faces some risk if what the salesperson said turns out to be false or if what was promised is not delivered.


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