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ESTABLISHING ONLINE STORE LOYALTY: THE ROLE OF ATMOSPHERICS AND PLEASURE IN CREATING ONLINE STORE LOYALTY

by Davis, Lenita Marie

Abstract (Summary)
Creating store loyalty is a difficult but necessary undertaking for retailers. This effort is especially difficult for online store retailers where the number of competitors is innumerable. This study explores online store loyalty and the effect of online store atmospherics. The focus of the research is to explore the customer's emotional response to the shopping experience and their impact on loyalty attitudes and behaviors. The study empirically tests a three-phase framework of online store loyalty and proposes that loyalty be measured as a function of the attitude towards repurchase, strength of the attitude towards repurchase and percentage of purchases. The loyalty framework was tested using a two-week longitudinal study involving two fictional online retailers and four different web sites. The study manipulated the presence of web site cues that are non-essential to the shopping task; the product and pricing remained the same across all store web sites. The empirical work uses structural equation modeling to empirically test the model of online store loyalty. The analyses show that online store loyalty is positively affected by pleasant shopping experiences. In addition, expected pleasure and perceived risk are shown to affected a key component of store loyalty-the customer's attitude towards repurchasing. The study also illustrates that the customer's attitude towards repurchase and its ability to predict actual purchasing behavior increases in significance when the strength of the attitude, specifically, the extremity and level of certainty, are considered. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are also discussed.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:University of Cincinnati

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:online shopping customer loyalty attitude strength atmospherics

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2001

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