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Consumer satisfaction reflects the extent to which a consumer's conscious desires or expectations are fulfilled. It is generally unwise to place too much emphasis on satisfaction because (a) conscious desires overlap only partially with true needs, which are more important and may be unconscious; (b) expectations may be unreasonably high or low, and are limited by what the consumer thought was possible; and (c) desires and expectations fluctuate over time more erratically than true needs, making them a less reliable indicator of true quality or value. However, satisfaction is a useful outcome to complement other (qualitative and quantitative) information about quality or value.

Jane Davidson
10.4135/9781412950558.n106
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