More is not always better: The impact of value co-creation fit on B2B and B2C customer satisfaction


Michael A. Leven School of Management, Entrepreneurship and Hospitality

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Organizations increasingly rely on customer involvement in the value creation process (i.e., co-creation) to enhance customer satisfaction and differentiate themselves from competitors. While past research has largely indicated that more co-creation is beneficial, some have suggested yet not empirically validated that excess co-creation may negatively impact customers. Applying the service-dominant logic, two studies (B2B and B2C customers) offer insight into the appropriate levels of the co-production and value-in-use dimensions of co-creation. For both B2B and B2C customers, polynomial regression and surface plot analyses indicate an inverted U-shaped relationship between value co-creation and satisfaction, establishing that more co-creation is beneficial only up to a point. As such, we inform managers of factors that can cause the relationship between co-creation and satisfaction to peak and then turn negative. Further, customer expertise and process enjoyment moderate this relationship for B2C (but not B2B) customers, thereby offering ways to mitigate the negative effects of excess co-creation for end-customers. The studies also highlight the importance of value co-creation “fit” between the customer's expected and experienced levels of co-creation. Interestingly, positive misfit (i.e., excess co-creation) retains a stronger negative influence on customer satisfaction than negative misfit (i.e., insufficient co-creation) for both B2B and B2C customers.

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Journal of Business Logistics

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