Service robots and artificial intelligence promise to increase productivity and reduce costs, prompting substantial growth in sales of service robots and research dedicated to understanding their implications. Nevertheless, marketing research on this phenomenon is scarce. To establish some fundamental insights related to this research domain, the current article seeks to complement research on robots’ human-likeness with investigations of the factors that service managers must choose for the service robots implemented in their service setting. A three-part framework, comprised of robot design, customer features, and service encounter characteristics, specifies key factors within each category that need to be analyzed together to determine their optimal adaptation to different service components. Definitions and overlapping concepts are clarified, together with previous knowledge on each variable and research gaps that need to be solved. This framework and the final research questions provide a research agenda to guide scholars and help practitioners implement service robots successfully.
- Service robots
- artificial intelligence
- customer features
- robot design
- service encounter characteristics