Investigating a comparative evaluation approach in explaining loyalty

Published on Sep 22, 2017in Marketing Intelligence & Planning
· DOI :10.1108/MIP-03-2017-0061
Anand Kumar Jaiswal10
Estimated H-index: 10
(IIMA: Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad),
Jos Lemmink26
Estimated H-index: 26
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the superiority of comparative evaluation or relative attitudinal measurement approach in which the respondent evaluates one object with direct comparison with other objects. The study uses comparative and non-comparative approaches to examine the effects of service quality, value, and customer satisfaction on attitudinal loyalty in a service setting. Design/methodology/approach The study uses the data collected from the survey of 300 customers of two large Indian banks. Findings The results provide partial support to the superiority of the comparative evaluation over non-comparative evaluation. Additionally, results indicate that service quality positively affects customer value, and both service quality and customer value have a direct positive effect on customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction drives attitudinal loyalty which in turn leads to customers’ willingness to pay more. Research limitations/implications In the study, two banks were used for comparative evaluation. Since consumers’ consideration set can consist of more than two alternatives, future studies can include more than two objects. Practical implications Non-comparative measurements do not always adequately explain customer loyalty and superior performance of firms. This could potentially lead to misinterpretations of effects of service quality improvement programs and thus sub-optimal management decisions. Managers should use comparative evaluation approach for measuring marketing variables wherever possible. Originality/value Although the use of comparative evaluation is suggested in the literature (Dick and Basu, 1994), extant research has not systematically examined its superiority over non-comparative evaluation. This study empirically tests the comparative evaluation approach against the non-comparative approach by examining a comprehensive model involving the interrelationships among service quality, value, customer satisfaction, and their impact on attitudinal loyalty and willingness to pay more.
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