Question michael kadembo Finance & Economics

Compare and contrast customer satisfaction and expectation

Compare and contrast customer satisfaction and expectation

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Customer satisfaction is a judgement following consumption experience - it is the consumer’s judgement that a product/service provided (or is providing) a pleasurable level of consumption-related fulfilment. (Oliver 1997). While the literature contains significant differences in the definition of satisfaction, all the definitions share some common elements. When examined as a whole, three general components can be identified: 1) consumer satisfaction is a response (emotional or cognitive); 2) the response pertains to a particular focus (expectations, product, consumption experience, etc.); and 3) the response occurs at a particular time (after consumption, after choice, based on accumulated experience, etc) (Giese and Cote 2000)

Whereas, customer expectations are beliefs about service delivery that serve as standards or reference points against which performance is judged. In other words, customer expectation is the perceived value customers seek from the purchase of a good or service. It should be noted that expectations are an important aspect of customers’ satisfaction. Ensuring customer satisfaction comes down to meeting customer expectations or exceeding them. When meeting the expectations, the customer confirms his or her expectations. When the expectations are not met they are however disconfirmed, which can then be done in either a positive manner, resulting in a high level of customer satisfaction, or in a negative manner, resulting in dissatisfaction (Andersson and Liedman 2013)


Oliver, Richard L. (1997), Satisfaction: A Behavioural Perspective on the Consumer, New York: McGraw Hill

Giese, Joane L., and Cote, Joseph A. (2000), Defining Customer Satisfaction, Academy of Marketing Science Review 2000 (1)

Anderson, M. and Liedman, G. (2013) Consideration of Expectations to Enhance Customer Satisfaction. Department of Technology Management and Economics, Division of Innovation Engineering and Management, Chalmers University of Technology