Purpose - To measure service quality perceptions among spectators of a sports event. Design/methodology/approach - This paper reports the main findings of a 290 respondent questionnaire survey carried out "live" among home spectators at a sports fixture. This methodology of distributing and collecting questionnaires to and from home spectators is novel and can be used by other researchers. Also reported in the paper are follow-up discussions at a shopping precinct with lapsed fans. Findings - The paper identifies the main factors that influence attendance and the initiatives to attract new or lapsed supporters. Amongst the main findings is that those spectators who make regular contributions to the club through a range of schemes and are members of its independent supporters Association rate club and players public profiles higher and perceive season tickets and ground entrance prices better value than non-members, and are also more likely to visit the club shop to purchase merchandise. Originality/value - This paper reports a project carried out by a supporters forum of a Rugby League Club into the means of increasing attendance at home games. There are sparse details in the literature of similar projects of its type and scale being undertaken in sports arenas. Therefore, the methodology adopted, the questionnaire details and the findings can be useful in other sports environments.

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doi.org/10.1108/09604520510617310, hdl.handle.net/1765/67911
Managing Service Quality
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Dale, B., van Iwaarden, J., van der Wiele, T., & Williams, R. (2005). Service improvement in a sports environment: A study of spectator attendance. Managing Service Quality, 15(5), 470–484. doi:10.1108/09604520510617310