Gaining customer satisfaction through sustainable supplier development: The role of firm reputation and marketing communication

Di Fan, Cheng-Yong Xiao, Xiao Zhang*, Yujuan Guo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
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Recent cases demonstrate that negative effects of sustainability-related scandals experienced by upstream suppliers can spill over to downstream firms. Thus, initiatives to help suppliers improve their sustainability performance are becoming increasingly essential for firms’ risk management in relation to supply chains. Thus far, the literature has yet to provide significant evidence on how
firms can generate value from sustainable supplier development initiatives. In this study, we conduct dynamic panel data analysis of a dataset of 768 firm–year observations collected from four secondary sources, and find that sustainable supplier development initiatives can contribute to firms’ customer satisfaction, which further contributes to improved sales performance. Moreover, the relationship between sustainable supplier development initiatives and customer
satisfaction is negatively moderated by firm reputation, yet positively moderated by the firm’s advertising intensity. These results provide robust evidence that customer satisfaction is a valid mechanism that links sustainable supplier development initiatives with improved sales performance.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102453
Number of pages19
JournalTransportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review
Early online date30-Aug-2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct-2021


  • Sustainable supply chains
  • sustainable supplier development
  • customer satisfaction
  • secondary data
  • Panel Data Analysis

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