© 2016, © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to revisit our original paper published over 20 years ago and reflect on its purpose, contribution and what we can glean that might have implications for future research. Design/methodology/approach: A Google Scholar search showed that the article was cited 74 times. We discuss some of the contexts in which it was cited and identify two research themes that have emanated from this paper and hold promise for future research. Findings: We discuss two of the several contexts in which our research is discussed. These include the differential ways in which cues are used in a services context, including the ways in which different cues are used to evaluate services and how cues are used to develop consumer expectations. Originality/value: The study, which was cited 74 times according to Google Scholar, was formative in terms of discussion of, for example, how a variety of cues influence customer expectations and service evaluation, and how categories of cues, such as marketer controlled versus non-marketer controlled and personal versus non-personal, impact outcomes. The retrospective analysis was helpful in both reflecting on the status quo on some of these issues and suggesting directions for future research.