Critical Success Factors for Positive User Experience in Hotel Websites: Applying Herzberg's Two Factor Theory for User Experience Modeling

Critical Success Factors for Positive User Experience in Hotel Websites: Applying Herzberg's Two Factor Theory for User Experience Modeling

Arunasalam Sambhanthan (University of Portsmouth, UK) and Alice Good (University of Portsmouth, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6543-9.ch051


This research presents the development of a critical success factor matrix for increasing positive user experience of hotel websites based upon user ratings. Firstly, a number of critical success factors for web usability have been identified through the initial literature review. Secondly, hotel websites were surveyed in terms of critical success factors identified through the literature review. Thirdly, Herzberg's motivation theory has been applied to the user rating and the critical success factors were categorized into two areas. Finally, the critical success factor matrix has been developed using the two main sets of data.
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1. Introduction

Website usability plays a major role in building and nurturing an effective electronic business/customer relationship. In particular, the ability to trigger a positive user experience is a vital requirement for any e-commerce websites to reach its critical mass. There are however documented issues with the usability of hotel websites (Sambhanthan et al, 2012; iPerceptions Inc, 2012; Ip, Law & Lee, 2010). The ability to trigger a positive user experience via an e-commerce interface is critical in motivating the customer to buy tourism products. In other words, the user‘s motivation to buy is highly dependent upon how positive their experience is with the user interface. Consequently, developing web interfaces in a manner which could trigger positive user experience is critical for tourism businesses. Therefore the research questions of this study:

  • What are the Critical Success Factors for Positive User Experience in Hotel websites?

  • How the Herzberg’s two factor theory could be applied for User Experience Modeling?

Hence, this study aims to explore the critical success factors for positive user experience in hotel websites. The study, further investigate on classifying the critical success factors according to Herzberg’s two factor theory of motivation. The main contribution of this paper is to provide a classification of critical success factors into two types according to the two factor theory propounded by Herzberg.

The paper begins with the introduction and moves into the core theories. The review of existing literature in the area is placed in the next section. The hypotheses were developed next to that and followed by the methodology section. Then the results are presented and followed by statistical analysis and Herzberg’s theory has been applied and the factors are classified accordingly. Finally the implications are described and followed by the conclusions and future research directions.


2. A Contextual Definition Of Usability

Preece et al. (2002) highlights that “Ensuring that interactive products are easy to learn, effective to use, and enjoyable from the user’s perspective” The research presented within this paper focuses on hotel web interfaces and specifically looks at the user‘s experience triggered by the hotels’ websites. The importance of matching usability with user experience goals is well documented (Schneiderman & Plaisant, 2005; Preece et al, 2002). Preece et al. (2002) highlights six usability goals and ten user experience goals as the main parameters of measuring usability as depicted in Figure 1.

Figure 1.

Usability goals: At center of interaction design. User-experience goals: Outer ring of diagram (secondary to usability goals).

A positive user experience is an important factor to ensure the continued usage of any interactive system.This is particularly relevant for ecommerce sites.If the site does not induce a positive user experience from the outset, customers are far less likely to return. Poor user experience of ecommerce sites can potentially contribute to loss of revenue.For the purpose of this research, the degree of usability and user experience will relate to the specific features of hotel web sites, which trigger positive user experience through ensuring the interface is easy to learn, effective to use and enjoyable from the user’s perspective. This research aims to specify the usability shortcomings of a study of hotel websites through the identification of design elements which trigger positive user experience. The main focus of this study will therefore be on user perceptions of web interface elements affecting usability and user experience from browsing Sri Lankan hotel web sites. The results of the study can be used to inform the design of hotel websites to ensure better usability and user experience. The ten user experience goals depicted in the above diagram are taken forward for the evaluation.

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