Marketers should advance SSTs more aggressively by defining SST interfaces and their goals through a concrete SST strategy. Airliners should develop marketing strategies for their SSTs that revolve around delivering higher customer value, by boosting awareness for SST in diverse means and locations, where they can educate consumers about their uses and benefits. Airliners should also regularly assess internal and external customer satisfaction with SST through a mixed survey and in-depth interview approach, where antecedents and consequences of SST are examined and tested. These studies should help further align SSTs with the firm's strategic goals and objectives, where both internal and external customer satisfaction are met.
Advancements in technology and the increasing demand to cut costs have been some of the several factors that have driven the development of self-service technologies (SSTs) in service industries. SSTs refer to “technological interfaces that enable customers to produce a service independent of direct service employee involvement” . Some examples of SSTs are interactive voice response systems, online shopping, and kiosks that help consumers gather information and make buying decisions. Studies have shown that SSTs has its promises, as well as its weaknesses, which marketers should be aware of and respond to. (Karp 2008; Meuter et al. 2000). SSTs have a large role to play in the airline sector, because they can improve operational efficiency, competitiveness, and customer service and satisfaction (Karp 2008; Meuter et al. 2000). This paper aims to explore the definitions, characteristics, advantages, disadvantages, and current trends of SST for airliners. Definitions SST is “defined as a technological interface that allows customers to produce and consume services without direct assistance from employees” (Meuter et al., 2000 cited in Curran and Meuter 2007, 283). This definition demonstrates that SST is primarily a service interaction that precludes human interaction. Cunningham, Young, and Gerlach (2008), nevertheless, included technologies that significantly decrease the “involvement” of service representatives (p.719). They believe that SSTs should also include technologies that have some form of human interface. The key terms used in