Exploring the forms of dysfunctional customer behaviour: A study of differences in servicescape and customer disaffection with service

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Although wide agreement exists between scholars and marketing practitioners concerning the prevalence of dysfunctional customer behaviour, to date empirical research into this phenomenon is lacking. This article aims to identify empirically grounded categories of dysfunctional customer behaviours and examine the extent to which customers' perceptions of physical servicescape environments, social facets of servicescape, and customer disaffection with service differ for each category. Based on a quantitative sample of 380 consumer perpetrators, cluster analysis reveals three clusters of dysfunctional customer behaviour forms labelled ‘petty norm infringements’, ‘felonious norm infringements’, and ‘belligerent norm infringements’. Subsequent variance analysis assesses the perceived differences between perceived physical servicescape, social servicescape, and customer disaffection for each identified form cluster. Specifically, the study findings reveal statistically significant differences between the forms of dysfunctional customer behaviour that are perpetrated across different service environments. The article concludes with a discussion of the implications of the study for theorists and practitioners.

Keywords: consumer deviance; dissatisfaction; dysfunctional customer behaviour; forms; inequity; servicescape

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0267257X.2011.619149

Affiliations: 1: Cardiff Business School, UK 2: Warwick Business School, UK

Publication date: February 1, 2012

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