Document Type : Research Article
Faculty of Architecture, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran
A B S T R A C T
Loyalty to the tourist destination is one of the critical challenges in tourism development. Tourist satisfaction is one of the necessary conditions for the success of the tourism industry; If it creates long-term benefits, it is the foundation of tourists' loyalty. Therefore, the present study was developed to investigate the factors affecting the loyalty of tourists to urban tourism destinations using the interpretive structural model approach. In terms of results, this research is considered part of applied research; Because it seeks to design a structural interpretative analysis model of factors affecting tourists' loyalty to tourist destinations. In terms of the purpose of conducting this research, it is part of applied research. The research approach of this study is inductive-deductive in terms of data collection logic. The statistical population was university professors and experts in the desired subject area, and 20 university professors and experts in the field of research were selected to conduct the research. The results of the implementation of the ISM model showed that the desired model includes five levels. The most influential is the fifth level. The fifth level had the most factors, which includes the factors of the quality of the behaviour of the host community, cultural values and customs, the variety of tourist attractions and the quality of services. Also, the results of the implementation of the Mik-Mac model showed that among the investigated factors, 4 factors were included in the driving cluster, 4 elements were included in the connected cluster, and 2 factors were included in the dependent cluster
Considering that the loyalty of tourists makes them revisit the destination, recommend the destination to others, and encourage friends and acquaintances to visit it, therefore, a proper evaluation of the factors affecting the loyalty of tourists in retaining tourists, developing tourism marketing strategies, followed by the sustainable development of tourism, has a significant impact, which can also cause the economic prosperity of the tourism destination. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate and identify these factors and stimuli in different studies. With its many historical, cultural, and natural attractions and special geographical location, Khoy city can play a powerful role in attracting tourists and developing the tourism industry. Considering suitable and important historical-cultural potentials such as Shams Tomb, which have made an area prone to tourism development, the existence of such valuable historical attractions in this city can make it one of the province's and country's tourism hubs. So, the efforts, cooperation, and coordination of all institutions can develop historical-cultural tourism in this province and city. The research seeks to answer the following questions regarding the role and importance of tourists' loyalty in word-of-mouth advertising and marketing in the direction of tourism development:
-What are the factors affecting tourists' loyalty? and
-What is its structural and interpretive model?
In terms of results, this research is considered part of applied research because it seeks to design a structural interpretive analysis model of factors affecting the loyalty of tourists to tourist destinations. In terms of the purpose of conducting this research, it is part of applied research. In fact, the research approach of this study is inductive-deductive in terms of the logic of data collection; for this purpose, first, by examining the theoretical and theoretical foundations of the research, the factors affecting the loyalty of tourists were identified, and based on the analogical approach, it was tried to design the important and influencing factors on the loyalty of tourists to tourist destinations based on the interpretative structural modeling method. The tool for gathering information is a questionnaire based on an interpretive structural model. The statistical population was university professors and experts in the desired subject area, who were selected by purposive sampling. It should be mentioned the targeted sample is divided into two categories: quota and judgmental sampling. In this research, judgmental sampling was exerted. Therefore, in this research, 20 university professors and experts in the field of research were selected from the purposeful judgmental sampling to conduct the research. Also, in order to answer the research questions, structural-interpretive modeling technique was used in MATLAB software environment.
Results and discussion
The findings of this research showed that the research model consists of five levels. The fifth is the most influential level, including four factors such as quality of behavior of the host community, cultural values and customs, variety of tourist attractions, and quality of services. This level directly affects the factors of the fourth level, which is the city's identity. The fourth level also directly affects the third level, which includes the perceived value, reputation, and credibility of the destination. The third level affects the second level factors, which include the two components of the destination image and place attachment. Finally, the second level affects the first level, which consists of the satisfaction with the destination. The results of the MICMAC analysis of the identified factors showed that in the first area (independent cluster), none of the identified factors were placed in this area; in the second area (dependent cluster), factors of satisfaction with the destination, and the image of the destination were located; in the third area (linked cluster) the factors of place attachment, perceived value, city identity, and reputation and credibility of the destination were placed. In the fourth cluster (stimulator cluster), the factors of the quality of behavior of the host community, the quality of tourism infrastructure and services, cultural values and customs, and the variety of tourist attractions were placed. These factors have a strong influence and low dependency, and to create more tourists' loyalty to tourism destinations, these should be a priority.
This research aimed to design an interpretive structural model of the factors affecting tourists' loyalty to tourist destinations using the ISM approach. Therefore, to achieve the goals considered in this research, it was tried to examine the layers affecting the tourists' loyalty to tourism destinations after identifying the factors through the formation of the achievement matrix. The fifth level is the most influential, which includes the four factors such as the quality of the behavior of the host community, cultural values and customs, the variety of tourist attractions, and the quality of services. In explaining the results of this section, it can be said that when tourists perceive a service's performance and the host community's behavior as equal to or beyond their expectations, they will be satisfied. As international tourists, they will have a positive image in their mind. The quality of behavior of the host community can be effective in choosing or not choosing a special destination for tourists. Therefore, the host society includes two groups of local people (workers and citizens). These people are among the important factors in attracting. This type of strategic approach in the field of urban tourism has forced many companies to evaluate the quality of the behavior of the host community as a brand in competitive conditions.
There is no funding support.
All of the authors approved thecontent of the manuscript and agreed on all aspects of the work.
Conflict of Interest
Authors declared no conflict of interest.
We are grateful to all the scientific consultants of this paper.