2. Behavioural responses to customer satisfaction, an empiri 687-707

2. Behavioural responses to customer satisfaction, an empiri 687-707

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Responses to customer satisfaction 687 European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 35 No. 5/6, 2001, pp. 687-707. # MCB University Press, 0309-0566 Received April 1999 Revised March 2000 Behavioural responses to customer satisfaction: an empirical study Antreas Athanassopoulos Athens Laboratory of Business Administration (ALBA), Athens, Greece Spiros Gounaris and Vlassis Stathakopoulos Athens University of Economics and Business, Athens, Greece Keywords Customer satisfaction, Consumer behaviour, Communications, Customer loyalty Abstract Investigates the behavioural consequences of customer satisfaction. More specifically, the authors examine the impact of customer satisfaction on customers’ behavioural responses. The results support the notion of direct effects of customer satisfaction on three criterion variables (decision to stay with the existing service provider, engagement in word-of-mouth communications, and intentions to switch service providers). Implications for practice, study limitations, and directions for future research are discussed. Introduction The quest for service quality has been an essential strategic component for firms attempting to succeed and survive in today’s fierce competitive environment (Phillips et al. , 1983; Parasuraman et al. , 1985; Reichheld and Sasser, 1990). As a result, in the last 15 years, we have witnessed an increasing number of research efforts on the subject. Review of the relevant literature reveals that the principal focus of service quality research has been twofold. First, the identification of service quality dimensions was of primary interest to researchers (Parasuraman et al. , 1985, 1991a). Second, the development of measurement instruments of service quality was the focus of subsequent research efforts (Parasuraman et al. , 1988, 1991b; 1993; Cronin and Taylor, 1992, 1994; Asubonteng et al. , 1996; Buttle, 1996; Athanassopoulos 1998, 1999). Furthermore, the agenda of service quality has very quickly been enhanced by creating the domain of customer satisfaction where most aspects of the marketing mix have been included into its determination (i.e. service quality, convenience, price). In this research we shall be primarily concerned with the effects of customer satisfaction on the behavioural responses of customers, giving, therefore, a more integrated dimension into the research family that seeks to determine the antecedents of customer loyalty[1]. In recent years though, the customer satisfaction research agenda has shifted focus and concentrated on other equally important issues. For example, service quality has been related to its impact on the financial performance of the organization (Greising, 1994; Rust et al. , 1995), consumer satisfaction (Spreng et al. , 1996), switching behaviour (Keaveney, 1995), and behavioral intentions (Boulding et al. , 1993; Cronin and Taylor, 1992). The research register for this journal is available at
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2. Behavioural responses to customer satisfaction, an empiri 687-707

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