Emotional Arousal in Customer Experience: A Dynamic View

Delphine Caruelle, Poja Shams, Anders Gustafsson, Line Lervik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Customer emotion in services has been extensively studied, but prior research has overlooked the dynamics of emotion over time. Our research addresses this gap by studying how emotional arousal varies throughout a service encounter. Drawing from the psychology literature, we identify certain features (or patterns) that characterize how arousal varies throughout a service encounter and predict how they may affect customer approach response (e.g., spending, unplanned purchases). We explore the effect of these features in field studies in two stores using a psychophysiological measure (electrodermal activity) to capture arousal over time. We find that (1) the highest arousal level reached during the encounter and (2) the skewness of the distribution of arousal levels (i.e., the frequency of lower arousal levels relative to higher ones) predict customer approach response. This paper opens new avenues for understanding customers from an emotional perspective, which can improve the customer experience in service encounters.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Business Research
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2023


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