Influence of servicescape on customers' satisfaction in classified restaurants in Nairobi county, Kenya
Kamau, Beatrice Ngonyo
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The term 'servicescapes', also referred to as ',::mosfherics', refers to several dimensions ef the physical or built environment ani is believed nhave a strong impact on customers' satisfaction (Bitner, 1992). It comprises of different elements such as; Ambient Conditions (e.g colour, lighting, music etc.); Spatial laysut and functi nality ( .g layout, equipment, furnishing, etc.); Signs, symbols and artefacts (eg signage, personal artefacts, style of decor, etc.). Hospitality industry has grown and more customers increasingly expect a more entertaining environment to enhance the dining experience, ead therefore, restaurateurs should make an effort to meet this desire with innovative and exiting designs. Most studies on servicescape have tended to focus on single elements such as music, colour and lighting. To date there is little about the entire mix of the aspects of servicescape dimensions. In addition majority of the studies done on serviceseape come from North America and J few from Europe. Studies that have been done in restaurants here in Kenya have failed to capture this important area, Arising from this gap, the purpose of this study is therefore to assess the effects of servicescapes on customers' in classified restaurants in Nairobi County, Kenya, The objectives of this study will be; to assess the influence of ambient conditions on customer's satisfaction; to establish the influence of spatial layout and functionality on customer's satisfaction; to explore the effect of signs, symbols and artefacts on customer's satisfaction; to deternnine customer's perceptions of cleanliness and their effect on customer's satisfaction. The studly will adopt a cross-sectional descriptive survey design to collect information on perceptions of customers in regard to servicescapes and their effects on customers' satisfaction. The studywill be carried out in classified restaurants in Nairobi County, Kenya, since Nairobi has the mnghest number of classified restaurants compared to other Counties. The target population will be all customers who dine in restaurants in Nairobi, sampling frame will be drawn from classified restaurants in Nairobi County. There are a total of 55 classified restaurants in Kenya, 45 in Nairobi and 10 in the Coast region. Since the restaurants are few a population census will saffice. Systematic random sampling will be used to select the sampled customers while purposive sampling will be used for the restaurant managers. A total of 450 customers will fill the quesfionnaires and 45 restaurant managers will be interviewed. Instruments to be used include qeestionnaires, interviews and observation checklists. Validity and reliability will be enhanced by pre-testing the instruments. Descriptive statistics employing frequencies and mean will be used!to examine the demographic characteristics and perceptions of customers on the various servicescape dimensions. Pearson's moment correlation will be used to assess the relationship between dependent and independent variables. Multiple regression will also be used to identify the best predictor variable for customer satisfaction, while hypotheses will be tested using Chi-square tests. The anticipated findings are that servicescape will have a positive effect on customers' satisfaction.