The main purpose of this research was to develop a universal model to evaluate the perceived value of tourism services and satisfaction with, and loyalty to, destinations from the consumers’ perspective and demonstrated the model’s applicability in this context.
Using the structural equation model, cause and effect relationships were identified between the proposed model’s constructs, and indices of quality, satisfaction and loyalty among tourists were estimated. This system was applied to a large set of data collected with a structured questionnaire distributed to tourists visiting the city of Seville through a non-probabilistic sampling by intentional quotas method. In total, 922 valid surveys were obtained.
The indices show that tourists who visit Seville report a high level of loyalty to, and satisfaction with, this place because of the perceived quality of a variety of services. It is observed that the perceived quality index is much higher (17.95 per cent) than the expected quality index, so the quality of the service received by the tourist during his/her visit to Seville is described as excellent.
Regarding this study’s limitations, other variables could have been included that influence tourist satisfaction, such as the climate, the effect of advertising medium, the prices and the emotional components. In addition, surveying tourists’ expectations before their visit is virtually impossible, as is surveying the same tourists again about their perceived value and satisfaction after their visit. Future lines of research could focus on the intersection of information between tourism offer and demand, providing information about an appropriate balance in specific markets. The proposed model can also be applied to other tourism places that are similar to Seville’s tourism offer, allowing useful comparisons and identification of critical points and ways to improve customer satisfaction continuously.
By establishing indices of expected and perceived quality and satisfaction and loyalty among tourists, tourism authorities and different economic agents involved in this sector can receive objective information about the results and quality of tourism services. Tourism managers, thus, can set objectives for improvements and competitiveness, as well as building and maintaining customer loyalty. At the same time, these indices allow comparisons with other organisations and places. By facilitating greater transparency in the measurement of quality and satisfaction, service providers connected to tourism can create a platform on which to articulate clearly their contributions to interested parties and local communities.
These results constitute strategies and findings that any tourism place has to consider in the planning and development of its products. Therefore the model can help to encourage a long-term market perspective among tourism sector regulators, investors and agencies. With the information obtained with this model, areas needing improvement can be identified and the appropriate procedures can be put into practice to improve the tourism offer, adjusting it to meet travellers’ needs according to their motivations to travel to the destination. Residents also can benefit from these measures, as their quality of life will improve through upgrades of the city’s tourism facilities.
The unique contribution of the present study lies in how the indices or indicators of quality of, satisfaction with and loyalty to destinations among tourists are easily measured by applying structural equation modelling. A new approach to measure satisfaction, loyalty and quality is used based on a scale from 0 to 100, and the index results are very useful for comparing different tourist places.
Castillo Canalejo, A.M. and Jimber del Río, J.A. (2018), "Quality, satisfaction and loyalty indices", Journal of Place Management and Development, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 428-446. https://doi.org/10.1108/JPMD-05-2017-0040
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