Dear Customer, Thank You for Your Review: The Service Failure-recovery Dyadic Interactions in the Restaurant Industry

Inda Premordia, Timea Gál


The advent of Web 2.0 has encouraged restaurant customers to post online reviews, and oftentimes, not in favor of the company. When a service failure occurs, the customer may voice their complaints publicly online. The company, on the other hand, has the opportunity to respond to these complaints and use it as a part of their service recovery strategy. While some companies are responding to negative reviews, only a few have the knowledge on how to do it effectively. Built on perceived justice framework: distributive, procedural, interactional; and service failure severity type: outcome-process, major-minor, present study intends to understand different resolution styles adopted by the company to varying types of customer complaint. The findings outline: (1) the vast majority of the company exhibits only a low level of responsiveness to complaints; (2) the most severe complaints deal with psychological loss, physical loss and major incidents lead to frustration; (3) however, different strategies depending upon service failure severity are yet to be implemented by the company; (4) while components in interactional justice are mostly performed, rude responses are also frequently applied. Further elaboration of the findings and insights for marketing practice are discussed in the text.

Keywords: Service recovery; Service failure severity; Online customer reviews; Restaurant industry

JEL Classifications: L83, L84, Z33


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