Revisiting Service Quality through the Lens of Experience-Centric Services

Ahmad Beltagui, Marina Candi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this research is to revisit prevailing notions of service quality by developing and testing a model of service quality for experience-centric services.
By problematizing the service quality literature, a model is developed to capture impacts of outcome-achievement, instrumental performance and expressive performance on customer loyalty. A multi-group structural equation model is tested to establish the moderating effect of perceived service character—utilitarian or hedonic.
Outcome-achievement mediates the direct relationships between instrumental and expressive performance, respectively, and loyalty; the strength of these relationships is moderated by perceived service character.
Emotional design to improve the experience is effective provided the expected outcome is achieved. However, for services that customers perceive as experience-centric, the outcome may be somewhat ambiguously defined and expressive performance is valued more highly than instrumental performance.
Understanding customers’ perception of a service—whether customers seek value related to outcomes or emotions—is crucial when selecting appropriate measures of service quality and performance. Creating a good experience is generally beneficial, but it must be designed according to the character of the service in question.
The research presents empirical evidence on how service experience contributes to customer loyalty by testing a model of service quality that is suited to experience-centric services. Furthermore, it identifies the importance of understanding service character when designing and managing services.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)915-932
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 5 Mar 2018

Bibliographical note

© 2018 Emerald Publishing Limited.
Ahmad Beltagui, Marina Candi, (2018) "Revisiting service quality through the lens of experience-centric services", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 38 Issue: 3, pp.915-932,

Funding: European Union’s Seventh Framework Program for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration under Grant Agreement number 251383.


  • Service quality
  • Service Design
  • Experience
  • Customer loyalty
  • structural equation modeling
  • Experience-centric service


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