Ekinci, Yuksel; Dawes, Philip L.; Massey, Graham R. (Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2008)
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of self-congruence on consumer satisfaction with services and to develop and test a conceptual model of the antecedents and consequences of consumer satisfaction in the hospitality industry. Design/methodology/approach – The conceptual framework consists of the following constructs: actual self-congruence, ideal self-congruence, desires congruence, service quality, consumers' overall attitude to a service firm, and intention to return. Moreover, 12 hypotheses were developed and tested. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis were used to test the validity of the measures, while PLS was used in hypotheses testing. Data were collected from 185 consumers who had recently visited a restaurant or hotel. Findings – Strong support was found for 11 of the 12 hypotheses. Findings reveal that ideal self-congruence and desires congruence have positive effects on consumer satisfaction. In contrast, it is shown that actual self-congruence is not related to consumer satisfaction. Moreover, it is demonstrated that the two dimensions of service quality – physical quality and staff behaviour – have a positive impact on both desires congruence and consumer satisfaction. Importantly, consumer satisfaction is found to be a better indicator of the consumers' overall attitude to the service firm than service quality. The study confirms that consumer satisfaction mediates the relationship between the two service quality dimensions, ideal self-congruence, and intention to return. Originality/value – This study makes four important contributions. First, satisfaction research is advanced by integrating self-concept theory into the postpurchase evaluation of services. Second, the relationship between the multidimensional nature of service quality and consumer satisfaction is examined by testing paths from two posited dimensions of service quality – physical quality and staff behaviour – to satisfaction. Third, the consumers' overall attitude to a service firm is integrated into existing models of satisfaction and its impact on behavioural loyalty (intention to return) is tested. Finally, a contribution is made to the satisfaction research literature by testing the effect of service quality on desires congruence, and the effect of desires congruence on consumer satisfaction.
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