Service validity and service reliability of search, experience and credence services: A scenario study

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Abstract

The purpose of this research is to add to our understanding of the antecedents of customer satisfaction by examining the effects of service reliability (Is the service “correctly” produced?) and service validity (Is the “correct” service produced?) of search, experience and credence services. Design/methodology/approach – Service validity and service reliability were manipulated in scenarios describing service encounters with different types of services. Customer satisfaction was measured using questionnaires. Findings – Service validity and service reliability independently affect customer satisfaction with search services. For experience services, service validity and service reliability are necessary conditions for customer satisfaction. For credence services, no effects of service validity were found but the effects of service reliability on customers' satisfaction were profound. Research limitations/implications – Scenarios provided a useful method to investigate customer evaluation of different types of service situations. A limitation of this method was that the participants were not observed in a real service situation but had to give their opinion on hypothetical scenarios. Practical implications – For search and credence services, it is possible to compensate low service validity by providing a highly reliable service. However, managers of experience services should be aware that little can be gained when either service validity or service reliability is faulty. Originality/value – The present study provides empirical data on the effects of service reliability and the thus far neglected effects of service validity and integrates these (new) concepts in the model of information verification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-283
Number of pages13
JournalInternational journal of service industry management
Volume17
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Keywords

  • IR-58567
  • METIS-234347

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