This is to prevent the loss of current business and attract new customers ones at a minimal cost.
This study explores the relationship between customer service, customer satisfaction and the factors that encourage customers to choose and remain with specific airlines. In particular, this study evaluates the customer satisfaction among North American airline passengers and the quality of customer service of corresponding airlines.
A survey was used to gather the feedback of XYZ airline passengers at NYC airport. The survey items focused on the eight factors designated as independent variables. The independent variables considered were X1 - Delays (external forces such as weather), X2 - Culture (company), X3 - Prices/Frequent Flyer Programs, X4- Flexibility, X5 - Schedule, X6 - Employees, X7 - Quality of Product/Services (comfort), and X8 - Security.
The importance of customer service and the corresponding customer satisfaction cannot be undermined. Ventures can succeed only if there are customers. Since they are the ones who keep businesses running by bringing in profit and supplying feedbacks, it is essential to keep them satisfied. Customer satisfaction, also called user satisfaction, is defined simply as "a qualitative measure of performance as defined by customers, which meet their basic requirements and standards" (TechTarget, 2007). This definition has two main implications. First, customer satisfaction is dependent on the performance of the product or service. Second, measuring customer satisfaction involves knowledge of the basic requirements and standards of the customers.
In relation to customer satisfaction, customer service is a term that characterizes what happens when the customer encounters the business (The Times Newspapers Ltd, 2008). Good customer service is significant because gaining a new customer can cost as much as five times the amount of keeping an existing one (The Times Newspapers Ltd, 2008). In short, convincing a new customer to avail of a product or a service is more expensive than having current ones return and buy again. This is where market research comes in. The Royal Statistical Society (n. d.) characterized market research as "a means for providers of goods and services to keep in touch with the needs and wants of those who buy and use the good and services". Based on this definition, customer service and customer satisfaction are invariably connected and market research is a way of looking into and strengthening this connection.
Referring to an interview with Dianna Booher, president of Booher Consultants, Inc., Reh (2008) wrote that customer service is more important than ever. This is because "customers have more options than ever before" and the competitive advantage now lies on the "ability to keep customers and repeat business" (Reh, 2008). Today, customer service has to go beyond good; it has to be "superior and unexpected". Thus, good results from customer satisfaction research are reflections of excellent customer service.
To find out whether the wants and needs of the customers are satisfied, companies have to ask them (Reh, 2008). There are several ways of doing this including personal interviews, through phone calls, through snail mail or through e-mail. Most often, customer satisfaction is qualified through surveys (Tanur, 1996). According to Reh (2008), customer satisfa