Project

Customer Satisfaction with Services

Goal: Examines various aspects related to customer satisfaction, including its measurement, drivers, and halo effects.

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Jochen Wirtz
added 15 research items
Many service firms measure satisfaction or quality on an attribute level. Halo effects between attributes have been shown to exist in many contexts mainly in social psychology and human resource management. In marketing, halo effects have been examined nearly exclusively in consumer decision making. Examines for the first time the existence of halo effects in consumer satisfaction. Employs a true experimental design. Expectations and performance of a single service attribute were manipulated and all other attribute levels were held constant. Finds the existence of strong halo effects which could have led to wrong conclusions and managerial actions in an applied context.
Russell’s model of affect, with its two dimensions of pleasure and arousal, has been used increasingly to model the experiential nature of services. The outcome variable used in this stream of research is still the original approach/avoidance response behavior as developed by environmental psychologists. This is in contrast to much of the research in consumer behavior, which uses satisfaction to evaluate consumption experiences. In this study, a conceptual model is proposed that integrates the research on the environmental perspective of service experiences with the standard satisfaction model. An experiment was conducted to test a part of this model. It was found that, as hypothesized, confirmation/disconfirmation has a direct and positive effect on pleasure, and both, in turn, have direct and positive effects on satisfaction. The hypothesized role of arousal could not be confirmed.
Research on perceived risk and multiattribute models with uncertain attributes has shown that consumers are familiar with unit-to-unit variability of products and services, and can expect some kind of performance level distribution. This has led to the modelling of expectations along two dimensions – expected mean performance and some measure of its variance. This perspective is in accordance with theories on decision making in economics, finance and decision science. Satisfaction models, however, implicitly assume that expectations are unidimensional, and so far, no research has examined the impact of expected performance heterogeneity on the satisfaction processes. This is surprising, particularly in services marketing, as a high degree of performance heterogeneity is a frequently cited feature of service encounters. In this study, different levels of expected performance heterogeneity were manipulated using a unique laboratory simulator. The results clearly show that expected performance heterogeneity can have impact on the satisfaction process. In particular, at small levels of actual disconfirmation the presence of uncertainty in expectations improves the level of disconfirmation, shifting it towards “better than expected”, and improving overall satisfaction. At higher levels of disconfirmation, uncertainty in expectations did not show any effect on disconfirmation levels.
Jochen Wirtz
added a project goal
Examines various aspects related to customer satisfaction, including its measurement, drivers, and halo effects.