The Long Good-Bye: The Dissolution of Customer-Service Provider Relationships

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Our research examines customer-service provider relationship dissolution. We conducted in-depth interviews with five women who recently took at least several months to terminate a service relationship. The data provide a holistic perspective on why consumers take a long time to exit, how they exit, and their expectations about rekindling their relationships. Based on our data, we conceptualize a model of the long exit, a process that includes a dissolution stage, an exit stage, and a post-dissolution stage. Our model offers a theoretical framework of service dissolution, as well as practical implications for service providers.


Copyright 2000 Wiley

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Publication Title

Psychology and Marketing

Published Citation

Coulter, Robin A. and Mark Ligas (2000), “The Long Good-Bye: The Dissolution of Customer-Service Provider Relationships,” Psychology and Marketing, 17 (8), 669-695.



Peer Reviewed