Relational benefits in services industries: The customer’s perspective

  • Kevin P. Gwinner
  • Dwayne D. Gremler
  • Mary Jo Bitner


This research examines the benefits customers receive as a result of engaging in long-term relational exchanges with service firms. Findings from two studies indicate that consumer relational benefits can be categorized into three distinct benefit types: confidence, social, and special treatment benefits. Confidence benefits are received more and rated as more important than the other relational benefits by consumers, followed by social and special treatment benefits, respectively. Responses segmented by type of service business show a consistent pattern with respect to customer rankings of benefit importance. Management implications for relational strategies and future research implications of the findings are discussed.


Service Provider Social Benefit Relational Benefit Service Firm Service Encounter 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Academy of Marketing Science 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin P. Gwinner
    • 1
  • Dwayne D. Gremler
    • 2
  • Mary Jo Bitner
    • 3
  1. 1.East Carolina UniversityUSA
  2. 2.University of IdahoUSA
  3. 3.Arizona State UniversityUSA

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