Consumer Responses to Salient Image Attributes in Restaurant Selection in Southern Gauteng, South Africa
Restaurant choice may be influenced by various factors. Literature identifies considerable variations in the attributes that influence restaurant patronage. The study reports on salient image attributes that influence restaurant patronage behavior and examines the relationship between image attributes on satisfaction and loyalty. The study adopted a quantitative approach in which a structured questionnaire was used to survey 247 respondents who were selected using non-probability convenience sampling. Six dimensions measuring image attributes were found to be applicable within restaurants. A restaurant’s atmospherics or ambience, service personnel, pricing, payment options, comfort and overall cleanliness of the environment were identified as key factors that customers use when choosing restaurants. Four factors namely; atmospherics, employee service, pricing and cleanliness showed a strong predictive relationship with satisfaction. The results obtained indicated strong correlations between satisfaction and loyalty. Furthermore, atmospherics, employee service and restaurant cleanliness showed strong predictive relationships with satisfaction. Satisfaction in turn showed a strong predictive relationship with loyalty. The instrument can be used as a diagnostic tool for uncovering broad areas of restaurant salient image attributes, shortfalls and strengths by undertaking periodic measurements of image enhancement strategies.
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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)
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