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South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol.

ISSN 2289-1560


Yong Azrina Ali Akbar
Faculty of Business Management
University Teknologi MARA J ohor, 85000 Segamat J ohor, Malaysia
Email: yong198@johor.uitm.edu.my, Tel: 012-2483028

Muharratul Sharifah Shaik Alaudeen
Faculty of Business Management
University Teknologi MARA J ohor, 85000 Segamat J ohor, Malaysia
Email: muharr416@johor.uitm.edu.my, Tel: 012-7631343


The changing trend and lifestyle today such as more women entering the workforce, extended working hour, increasing
household income and busier daily schedule had lead the consumer to eating out. This was fulfilling their need to have meal
outside by choosing convenience alternative. The emergence of plenty restaurants in the country has lead the entrepreneurs to
compete each other to ensure sustainability in their business margain. Therefore, this study was conducted to identify and
understand the factors that influence consumer in choosing normal full-service restaurant at Seri Iskandar, Perak. The study
also investigates consumer preference and attitude toward halal status that influence consumer need in choosing normal full-
service restaurant. A samples of 150 had being selected for this study by using convenience sampling method. The data was
analyzed using SPSS software and Factor Analysis technique. This showed that, consumers are put heavy priorities on food
quality, followed by trustworthiness, service quality, price, environment, and lastly location in choosing normal full-service
restaurant. Malay respondents are more concern on trustworthiness (halal status) compared to other races in selecting normal
full-service restaurant. The implication of this study, entrepreneurs can consider these factors as their main competitive

Keywords: factor, choosing, normal full-service restaurant.


Eating is a daily necessity. According to the hierarchy of needs, a person must fulfill the physiological needs which are food,
water, air and shelter. People concentrate on satisfying these needs before turning to higher needs (Lewis, 2007). In a fast paced
and affluent society, eating out in restaurants has also become an important social and business occasion. The consumers usually
have a wide range of options to choose from. There are restaurants by the thousands offering a full range of food varieties and
services. As the number of restaurants has mushroomed, so the business has become much more competitive. Being able to meet
consumers' basic expectations in today's situation at best can ensure business survival. To be successful and outstanding, a
restaurant has to be able to exceed consumers' expectation by really understanding customers' reasons for selecting a particular
type of dining experience.

The growth of normal full-service restaurant was accelerating in Malaysia. This was due to good economic condition and
changing trend of Malaysian lifestyle. Nowadays people prefer to eat at normal full-service restaurant which consist of Mamak
stall, Chinese restaurant, and Tomyamrestaurant. Thus this study will dig the factors that influencing consumer in selecting
normal full-service restaurant in Malaysia.

Most previous research was study about premiumor high class full-service restaurant and fast-food restaurant. There were only
few researches about normal full-service restaurant. In fact, there are a lot of numbers of normal full-service restaurant that
operate in Malaysia. Because of that, it is important to do the study about this normal full-service restaurant that relates with
consumer behavior. This research will study about what consumer wants fromnormal full-service restaurant in Seri Iskandar,
Perak and also will help normal full-service restaurant entrepreneur to improve their service competitiveness.

This research can be beneficial to the full-service restaurant entrepreneur, the academician and researcher, the consumer, and the
policy maker or government.

Consumer Behavior
Blackwell, Miniard, and Engel (2006) stated that consumer behavior is defined as activities people undertake when obtaining,
consuming, and disposing of products and services. Besides, it also defined as a field of study that focuses on consumer
activities. The study and the scope of consumer behavior have evolved. Historically, the study of consumer behavior focused on
buyer behavior, or why people buy. Recently, researchers and practitioners have focused on consumption analysis, which
refers to why and how people use products in addition to why and how they buy.
South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
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In recent years, a major food consumption trend in urban parts of developing countries is that more consumers are eating
increasingly more meals outside of their homes (Selwyn 1991). Rising incomes, changing lifestyles and demographics are
primary reasons for this increase in spending and change in consumption behavior. Emergence of multiple income households,
more women working outside the home and the desire for convenience and service provide the necessary incentive for eating out
(Price 1993).

Role of Perception
Perception is the process of acquiring, interpreting, selecting, and organizing sensory information. Hawkins et al (1998) noted
that our perception is an approximation of reality. Our brain attempts to make sense out of the stimuli to which we are exposed.
For example, when we see there are many people eat at that restaurant, we assume it was the best restaurant at that area.

Consumer expectation of product performance plays an important role in food evaluation and can enhance the perception of a
product when it was tasted. Deliza and MacFie had separated expectation sources into (1) extrinsic cues (e.g. brand name,
familiarity), and (2) intrinsic cues (e.g. sensed characteristics). (Nizam, 2007).

Consumer Decision Making Process
Engel et al (1995) has developed a model to explain consumer behavior and highlighted five stages of the decision making

Figure 2.1: Consumer Purchase Model by Engel et al. 1995

The model views the purchases as a process that goes through several steps which problemrecognition, search, evaluation of
alternatives, purchase, and outcome. Consumer decision making process starts with recognition of the problem, which lead to a
search for ways of solving the problem. The next step is evaluating and compares each alternative that we had to get the possible
solutions that suitable with the problem. This will lead to a decision to buy one of them, afterward resulting in some kind of
output. All buying decision can be analyzed using these five steps, even the way they materialize may differ enormously.

This is simple model and widely used throughout the consumer behavior literature. It also is a good start for understanding how
consumers come to the final decisionin choosing the normal full-service restaurant.

Factors of choosing full-service restaurant
There are several of research had been done on what factors that influence consumers to choose full-service restaurant.
According to Lewis (1981), he considered five factors: food quality; menu variety; price; atmosphere; and convenience factors.
The importance of these attributes varied according to the type of restaurant, which in Lewis' case was a category united with
food type: family/popular; atmosphere; and gourmet. In all three instances, however, food quality was found to be the most
important considerationinfluencing restaurant selection by consumers.

In another research, Autys (1992) study more closely follows the distinct pattern set out by J une and Smith (1987). There are
variety of choice factors inthe restaurant decision process were collected and then collapsed into ten categories: food type; food
quality; value for money; image and atmosphere; location; speed of service; recommended; new experience; opening hours; and
facilities for children. To see if the type of restaurant chosen varied according to dining occasion, Auty also elicited four such
occasions fromthe pilot: a celebration (e.g. birthday); a social occasion; convenience/need for a quick meal; and business meal.
Evaluation of alternative
Search information
South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
ISSN 2289-1560


Autys (1992) study resulted that food types were the most important factor in choosing full-service restaurant. This is the
ranking for the ten variables that Auty had study; food type (71%); food quality (59%); value for money (46%); image and
atmosphere (33%); location (32%); speed of service (15%); recommended (11%); new experience (9%); and opening hours.

J une and Smith (1987) noted that there are five key criteria were used in their study of customer choice among restaurants: price,
atmosphere, liquor license, service and quality. Surroundings, customer turnover, location, price, quality of food, quality of
service, and type of food are the factors that consumers consider in choosing restaurant. These variables were chosen because
they are used in restaurant trade journals to identify strategies of competing restaurants (Reeves and Hoy, 1993). Huang (2007)
stated that the consumer need evaluate the factors such price, variety of food, parking lot, reservation, and special request in
choosing full-service restaurant.

Clearly, price is more important than service in affecting consumers' choice. The implication of the results is that, while service
is an important factor in restaurant selection, customers are nevertheless unwilling to pay an extra amount for a higher level of
service, while other things are being held constant. Hence, restaurant managers might be better off maintaining an acceptable
level of service, while keeping price as low as possible. (Alan, 2001). According to Dutta and Venkatesh (2007), the major types
of service failure in restaurants have been identified as slow service; inefficient staff; food and beverage quality problem;
cleanliness; unfriendly and unhelpful staff; incorrect billing; untidy staff; reservation missing; physical evidence lacking in
ambience; and finally, advertised promises not having been met.

J illian, Lester and Robert (1992) stated that the factors that influencing consumer to choose restaurant are prices of meal, past
experience with similar types of restaurants, reputation of restaurant among people that respondent know, convenience of
location, whether any memorable advertisement seen, appearance of other customers, whether employee appropriately dressed,
manner of employees, and premise. In determining the expected quality of service, price plays a surprisingly small role, the
manner of the employees and the word-of-mouth again dominating respondents perception. Martin and Frumkin (2005) stated
that consumer's reasons for choosing a particular full-service restaurant, first is because of they like be at that restaurant,
convenience location, quality of food, good variety of food, and lastly price factor.

Sulek and Hensley (2004) noted that the factors those influencing consumers in choosing full-service restaurant are food quality,
atmosphere, quality of the service, and interpersonal skills of the restaurant employee.

Figure 3.2: Percentage of respondents ranking 4 or 5 in importance on a scale from 1 to 5

Source: J ournal of Restaurant and Institution, Vol. 109, Iss. 5. 1999
According to Dulen (1999), there are seven factors that cause consumer to choose particular full-service restaurant which are
food quality in the top rank, followed by cleanliness, service, value, menu variety, convenience, and lastly atmosphere.

U.Z.A. Ungku Fatimah et al. (2011) stated that foodservice hygiene is indeed important. Particularly, cleanliness or hygiene was
the third most important factor, after food variety and convenient location, that influences consumer selection of a FSR to dine
in. Although consumers are increasingly concerned about the nutritional value of the food they consume, food safety remains far
more important as the associated risk can be substantial. On the other hand, the low priority given to service quality (i.e.,
friendliness, quick service) might be attributed to the characteristics of the low scale FSRs.

Mike (1992) reported that a majority (63%) of truckers said food quality and taste is the primary factor motivating their choice of
a restaurant. Price (17%) took a back seat to service (19%) as the next-most crucial factor. Besides, the restaurant that offers
professionals amenities such as a free 24-hour movie theater; laundry; and clean showers that drivers can use at no charge when
they fill-up also cause truckers to choose that particular restaurant. This means that consumer prefer to choose the restaurant that
offer extra service that convenience for them.

In termof demographic factor, Duecy (2006) reported that demographic preferences also had influence consumer in choosing
full-service restaurant. Consumers over age 65 are more likely than an average customer to say their full-service restaurant
choice was driven by price, or because they were seeking a healthful or light meal. Meanwhile, consumers ages 18 to 34 years
South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
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old are above average "restaurant explorers," meaning they wanted to try new cuisines or new restaurants. The full-service
restaurant is older than general population and tends to not have kids in the household. Besides, full-service restaurant customers
are categorical in higher income (Gale, 2007).

Fromall the factors that stated in previous study, there are six factors that are relevant may consider for using in this study. The
factors that considered are price, quality of service, food quality, location, restaurant environment, and trustworthiness (halal
status). Below are the explanations about each factor that may use in this study.


Design of the study
This study uses the quantitative research methodology. The data was obtained by distributing a set of structured questionaire to
the respondent concerned. The respondents were asked to indicate the importance factors that are important to their opinion
along a five-point scale. In this study, 180 respondents were selected. The questionnaires were distributed to every customer who
walked into the restaurant. Respondent are required to complete the questionnaire while they were dining in the restaurant and
return it to researcher before leaving the restaurant. In the final analysis, only 150 were used for analysis.

The questionnaire has been piloted to a group of 30 customers to assess its validity before it was distributed. Fromthis test, the
respondents were able to attempt all the questions without much difficulty. However, questions were modified slightly in terms
of the wording in order to give a better understanding to respondents.
The research was conducted in Seri Iskandar Perak due to increasing population and developing area. In Seri Iskandar, there are
two universities which are Universiti Teknologi Petronas and Universiti Teknologi Mara Kampus Seri Iskandar. Seri Iskandar is
in Bota restrict.
Data Analysis
In order to analyze the data, Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 18.0 was used. Results were analyzed under
the following categories which include Frequency, ANOVA and Factor Analysis. Besides that, the validity and reliability of the
questions were analyzed using Cronbach Alpha.


Description of race
Majority of the respondents are Malay which consist of 66.7% (100 respondents) and the balance is consist of Chinese 20% (30
respondents), Indian 8.7% (13 respondents), and others race such Kadazan, Dusun and Melanau 4.7% (7 respondents).

Table 1: Frequency of race
Race Frequency Percentage (%)
Malay 100 66.7
Chinese 30 20.0
Indian 13 8.7
Others 7 4.7
Total 150 100

Description of importance
The result shows the mean scores and the ranking of total factors in choosing normal full-service restaurant. The ranking refer to
consumers perception on the importance of factor that most influence them when choosing normal full-service restaurant. All
ranking are within the range of 2.3 to 4.7. The highest mean shows the importance of factor perceive by consumer when
Choosing Factors
Service quality
Food quality
(halal status)

South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
ISSN 2289-1560


choosing normal full-service restaurant. The highest mean are the food quality (4.7200), followed by trustworthiness (4.2733)
and service quality (4.0911) as the most importance factor when choosing normal full-service restaurant, while the rest of the
factor score are below 4.0. The rest of factor that not too importance when choosing normal full-service restaurant are price
(3.4667), followed by environment (2.5667) and lastly location (2.3400).

Table 2: Frequency of description of importance
N Mean
Importance of price 150 3.4667
Importance of food quality 150 4.7200
Importance of service quality 150 4.0911
Importance of location 150 2.3400
Importance of environment 150 2.5667
Importance of trustworthiness (halal status) 150 4.2733

Race analysis (ANOVA)
Race is divided into four groups which consist of Malay, Chinese, Indian, and others. Fromthe table, it shows that there are four
factors which show significant differences between the groups of race in termof food quality, location, environment, and
trustworthiness. In comparison to mean analysis:

Food quality There is significant different in ranking the importance factors of food quality in choosing normal full-service
restaurant between Indian groups with other three race groups. High mean analysis (mean: 5.77) show that Indian is more
concern about importance of food quality than other groups.

Location There is significant different in ranking the importance factors of location in choosing normal full-service restaurant
between Chinese groups with the rest of the group. Chinese (mean: 3.13) are more concern toward importance of location than
the rest of the groups.

Environment There is significant different in ranking the importance factors of environment in choosing normal full-service
restaurant between Chinese groups with the rest of groups. The highest mean score (mean: 3.17) by Chinese group shows that
Chinese more emphasize on environment when choosing normal full-service restaurant than other race groups.
Trustworthiness There is significant different in ranking the importance factors of trustworthiness in choosing normal full-
service restaurant between Malay groups with the rest of groups. Malay group score the highest mean, 5.32 shows that Malay
group more concern about halal status when choosing normal full-service restaurant than other race groups.

Table 3: Race analysis (ANOVA)
N Mean
Food quality Malay
Location Malay
Environment Malay
Trustworthiness Malay

South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
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Table 4: Summary one-way ANOVA on race analysis


Food quality Indian
Service quality
Location Chinese
Environment Chinese
Trustworthiness Malay
Conclusion Indian more concern about food quality than other race

Chinese more emphasize on location and environment
when selecting normal full-service restaurant than other
race groups.

Malay more concern on halal status compared to other
rest race groups.

Factor Analysis
A total of 150 respondents data was factor analyzed to examine the application earlier six main factors: price, food quality,
service quality, location, environment, and trustworthiness. The data for factor analysis were 14 dimensions comprise of six
factors to measure on a weighted five-scale ranging fromstrongly disagree to strongly agree.

The Principal Component and Varimax rotation was used for the analysis to extract the dimension tested. Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin
measure of sampling adequacy varies between 0 and 1, and values closer to 1 are better. A value was 0.657 is measured for this
data and it is adequate to run factor analysis. The overall significant of the correlation matrix was 0.000 with a Bartletts Test of
Sphericity value of 512.718 which indicated that the data matrix and sufficient correlation to the factor analysis. Total variance
explained is 69.05% which means 69.05% of the dimension approved indicated the factors.

Table 5: KMO and Bartletts Test

Fromthe Varimax rotated factor matrix, 6 factors with 14 variables were identified and no factor being excluded, with loading
0.5 on them. Hair et.al. (1995) stated that factor loading greater than 0.4 are considered more important; and if the loading are
greater than 0.50, they are considered practically significant. Therefore factor loading less than 0.50 will be automatically
removed fromthe rotated component matrix analysis.

The next table indicates the factor analysis produced a clean factor structure with relatively higher loading on the appropriate
factors. Most variables loaded heavily, verifying that there was a minimal overlap among these factors and that all factors were
independently structured. The higher loading signaled the correlation of the dimensions with the factors on which they loaded.
Generally, the communality of each dimension was relatively high ranging from0.53 to 0.956, which also indicated that the
variance of the original values was captured will by the 6 factors. However, the rotated factor result is show some mixing up
among the dimension measure for certain factor and this is not as it being expected. Some dimensions use to measure a factor fall
under other factor category and in all factor category there are other dimension fall into it.

Then the order of the dimension fromthe factor solution will be sorted according to ascending order of the Cronbachs Alpha
Coefficient of reliability to reflect the reliability dimensions. Composite reliability of a construct was calculated to measure
internal consistency of six factors measured. The most reliable dimension will be list first. A high alpha coefficient of reliability
indicated that measurement variable used to measure the particular dimension are relatively reliable than low alpha coefficient of
reliability. A dimension with alpha coefficient of reliability 0.4 and above is considered as more consistent dimension. The
higher the alpha coefficient of reliability means the higher the reliability of the particular dimension in indicating consumer
influences toward choosing normal full-service restaurant.

KMO and Bartlett' s Test
Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin Measure of Sampling
Approx. Chi-Square
Bartlett's Test of
South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
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Table 6: Result of factor analysis
Factor 1: Trustworthiness (halal status) Loading
1) Choose halal sign 0.956
2) Safe with halal sign 0.942
Factor 2: Food quality Loading
1) Cheap >taste 0.855
Factor 3: Multiple dimension factor Loading
1) Taste >price 0.749
2) Convenience parking lot 0.732
Factor 4: Service quality Loading
1) Service quality >price 0.747
2) Decoration -0.679
3) Restaurants employee manner

Factor 5: Price Loading
1) Lower price

2) The price give value

Factor 6: Taste Loading
1) Taste >location 0.877
2) Good taste 0.604

Table 7: Result reliability test for all dimensions

Table 8: Result reliability test for six factors (14 dimensions)
Factors Reliability ( )
Trustworthiness (halal status) 0.93
Service quality 0.62
Food quality 0.47
Price 0.34
Environment 0.15
Location 0.10

Discussion on the result (reliability test)
The cronbachs alpha value is considered good because greater than 0.6. As a result of rotated component matrix, one of the
loading shows negative value. In running the reliability test, this dimension was recoded into different variables to get good
alpha value.

In earlier, all the 17 dimensions have been run by using factor analysis. But the result of reliability test was not very good. It was
caused by the low quality of sample then lead to low cronbachs alpha value which is 0.529. The cronbachs alpha value for each
factors are as below:

Table 9: Result reliability test for six factors (17 dimensions)
Factors Reliability ( )
Trustworthiness (halal status) 0.93
Service quality 0.64
Food quality 0.45
Price 0.40
Environment -0.28
Location -0.34

Because of this bad cronbachs alpha value, researcher searches the other alternative to get the better result for reliability test.
The result of factor analysis shows that there are some negative sign in some of dimensions loading. Fromthis result, researcher
Reliability Statistics

Alpha N of Items
South East Asian Journal of Contemporary Business, Economics and Law, Vol. 1
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had been recoding the negative dimensions loading to the difference variables to get good alpha value. There are four dimensions
that have been recoded but the cronbachs alpha value still not satisfies the researcher. Because of that, three dimensions has
been deleted and not included to run factor analysis. As a result, only 14 dimensions had been included in running factor
analysis. The result of cronbachs alpha value for 14 dimensions and each of factors are shown in Table 7 and Table 8. The good
cronbachs alpha value are 0.60 and above. For the result of factor analysis which is shows the consumer segmentation in
choosing normal full-service restaurant, cronbachs alpha value that has been consider is 0.40 and above. Thus, there are three
factors or consumer segmentation that had considered by consumer in choosing normal full-service restaurant which is
trustworthiness (halal status), service quality, and food quality.

Discussion on the result (factor analysis)

Factor 1: Trustworthiness (halal status)
Trustworthiness had two significant loading including always choice halal sign and feel safe when choose it. This is no change
fromthe previous classification. Since 66.7% respondents are Malay, the halal status becomes an important factor for the
respondent in choosing normal full-service restaurant. It plays important roles in influencing Malay consumers when choosing
normal full-service restaurant.

Factor 2: Food quality
Food quality just only had one significant loading. In earlier, there are three dimensions in this factor. After run the factor
analysis, it just left one dimension. The loading shows that respondents more emphasize on food quality rather than price.

Factor 3: Multiple Factor Dimensions
This factor had two significant loading. It included dimension from food quality and location. This indicate that consumer not
only emphasize on food quality but also concern about the convenient parking lot of the restaurant.

Factor 4: Service quality
The forth aspect that consumer concern is about service quality. In earlier, dimension of the fast in service is included in this
factor but after run the factor analysis, it not included in this factor. As a result, this dimension had three significant loading.
Factor 5: Price
The fifth factor that consumer assume importance in choosing normal full-service restaurant is price factor. It had two significant
loading. This factor analysis proved that price is not importance aspect in influencing consumer in choosing normal full-service
restaurant. Consumers prefer if the price they pay is value for them.

Factor 6: Taste
Taste is last dimension with two significant loading. In earlier, this dimensionis including in food quality factor. After factor
analysis had been done, this dimension separate to be another factor which is taste factor.


Fromthe result of description of importance, it could be summarized that consumers put heavy priorities on food quality,
followed by trustworthiness, service quality, price, environment, and location.

ANOVA result showed that there are four factors had significant differences between race and the importance of the factors.
There are food quality, location, environment, and trustworthiness. Indian emphasizes on food quality, Chinese more concern on
location and environment, and Malay put heavy priority on trustworthiness.

The factor analysis was conducted to examine the application of the proposed 6 factors that are trustworthiness (halal status),
service quality, food quality, price, environment, and location. Fromthe result, only 12 variables were identified fromthe
original of 14 dimensions and still categorized into 6 factors. But some of the factors name has been change and the result
shows trustworthiness, food quality, multiple dimension factors, service quality, price, and taste factors were existed. There is
slight difference in terms of the classification of the factors under each new factors, this is due to difference of consumers
perception and preference in terms of the way they perceive each of factors dimension.

The reliability test for all dimensions related to the factor revealed that there are only three factors that are highly reliable which
the score is more than 0.40. The factors are trustworthiness, service quality and food quality. Thus, we can conclude that are
three factors are importance in determinant for consumer when choosing normal full-service restaurant. Even though there were
only three factors that considered as important factors in choosing normal full-service restaurant, it does not mean that price,
location, environment, and other factors are not importance and should not to be considered. The quality of sample is not quite
good and it was due to the data obtained was less reliable.

The researchers wish to express their sincere thanks to Universiti Teknologi MARA for fully funding and supporting this study.
To all respondents who readily participated in this study, we are grateful and like to add that your contribution will never be

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