Complaining Behavior in the Service Context: Evidence from Benin City

Isibor Felix Osaiga, Agbonifoh Barnabas Aigbojie


This paper explores complaining behaviour with respect to restaurant and
interstate transport services in Benin City metropolis. It examines proportion of service
customers who are dissatisfied and complained, complaint motivation and factors
influencing complaint voicing in the restaurant and interstate transport service
subsectors. Using the survey research design, responses obtained from 371 respondents
were analysed using binomial analysis, chi square and multiple regression at a 0.05
level of statistical significance. Content analysis was employed for open ended
questions. Results from the study showed that while there was no significant difference
between the proportion of customers who were satisfied and those dissatisfied with the
service offering in both subsectors, there was also no significant difference between the
proportion of dissatisfied customers who complained and those who did not. Complaint
voicing in the selected service subsectors was found not to be dependent on gender, age,
educational level, usage frequency, income level, personal confidence of customer, cost
of service or severity of service failure. Based on the findings, the authors suggest that
there is need for restaurants and interstate transport companies in Nigeria to develop
formal complaint management systems. Procedures for consumer complaints should be
simple and involve little or no documentation as customers in the subsectors studied
seem not to be favourably disposed to putting their complaints in writing.

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