An exploration of the relationships between factors of perceived MOA service quality, their effects on customer satisfaction, and their influence on customer loyalty
This research investigates the influence of mobile ordering applications (MOAs) on the hospitality service experience. MOAs are a form of self-service technology (SST) that enable customers to produce services independent of direct employee interaction. Much of the past SST literature has investigated customers’ acceptance of MOAs, and largely fails to consider the influence of SSTs on post-service experiences. This is important because, post-service evaluations, like customer satisfaction, and post-service behaviours, including customer loyalty, are integral to successful SSTs. To capitalise on MOAs, hospitality managers thus require an understanding of how SSTs influence customer-firm relationships. This research aims to investigate the relationships between attributes of MOA service quality and customer satisfaction, and the influence these have on customer loyalty. The research question, the prevalence of empirical SST literature, and the resource constraints of the project indicated that a quantitative methodology was most appropriate. An online survey was distributed throughout the personal connections of the researcher and was posted on social media to increase exposure. There were 477 respondents altogether, who were generally female and between 18-24 years old. Congruent with previously validated scales, Likert-style questions tested respondents’ MOA service quality evaluations, customer satisfaction judgments, and loyalty intentions. The results conclude that the enjoyment, convenience, reliability, and control of MOAs are important to service quality evaluations, customer satisfaction, and reusage intentions. Accordingly, hospitality managers should develop the MOA attributes that are salient to service quality evaluations, which should lead to greater customer satisfaction and higher repeat usage intentions. Customer loyalty, by contrast, appears to be contingent on a holistic evaluation of the service experience, and while MOAs can provide a competitive advantage, they are not a panacea for customer dissatisfaction. Hence, there is scope for future research to investigate what influence MOAs have on the customer service experience.