Customer Dissatisfaction Responses to Restaurant Service Failures: Insights Into Noncomplainers From a Relational Perspective

Heejung Ro, University of Central Florida


This research investigates the reasons for noncomplaining and compares the return intentions of complainers and noncomplainers after a service failure in the restaurant context. Particularly, this research focuses on differentiating the two types of dissatisfaction responses from noncomplainers: loyalty and neglect. A survey of 171 respondents (81 complainers and 90 noncomplainers) is analyzed. Regarding the reasons for noncomplaining, four dimensions are identified and two dimensions (compassionate trust and lack of responsiveness) provide evidence for distinguishing loyalty from neglect. The loyalty customers show higher compassionate trust for and higher perception of responsiveness from the company than neglect customers. Customers’ return intentions are examined via two types of complainers (recovery satisfied and recovery dissatisfied) and two types of noncomplainers (loyalty and neglect). The findings suggest that loyalty customers have higher return intentions than neglect customers and their return intentions are as high as those of complainers who received satisfactory service recoveries.