Effects of online service failure on customers’ intentions to complain online

Xing'an Xu1, Luqi Wang1, Lilei Wang1, Kaini Xue1
1Tourism College, Hainan University, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Xu, X., Wang, L., Wang, L., & Xue, K. (2020). Effects of online service failure on customers’ intentions to complain online. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 48(10), e9394.

Volume 48 Issue 10 | e9394 | Published: October 2020 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.9394

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Dissatisfied customers are increasingly voicing complaints through social media following online service failures; therefore, it is important to clarify the motivational determinants of customers’ online complaint intentions (COCI). We investigated in 3 studies the influence and interaction effects of service failure types, attributions about these failures, scope of impact of the failures, and customer inoculation on both public and private online complaint intentions. Participants were 451 college students from Hainan Province, China. The results show that service failure types, service failure attributions, scope of impact of the service failure, and customer inoculation each had distinct effects on COCI and how customers complain online, and that these factors also had interactive effects on online complaint actions. Our finding that the form of COCI can predict service failure attributes offers implications for the implementation of enterprise service recovery from a consumer perspective.

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