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Effects of web site atmospherics on consumer responses: music and product presentation

Jung‐Hwan Kim (Department of Retailing, College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, USA)
Minjeong Kim (Merchandising Management Program, Department of Design and Human Environment, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon, USA)
Sharron J. Lennon (Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware, USA)

Direct Marketing: An International Journal

ISSN: 1750-5933

Article publication date: 27 March 2009

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the effects of web site atmospherics such as music and product presentation on consumers' emotional, cognitive, and conative responses in online shopping.

Design/methodology/approach

A convenience sample of 272 female college students participated in a web experiment employing a 2 (Product presentation: flat vs model)×2 (Music: present vs absent) between‐subjects factorial design.

Findings

The findings of this study showed that: product presentation (model vs flat) had a significant effect on consumers' emotional responses; and there were positive relationships among consumers' emotional, cognitive, and conative responses. Unexpectedly, music had no effect on consumers' emotional responses.

Research limitations/implications

Generalizing the results of this study is limited by the use of a convenience sample of college women.

Practical implications

Online retailers need to pay more attention on developing effective online atmospherics that evoke positive shopping outcomes. Based on the findings, product presentation using a model as compared to flat is recommended for online apparel retailers.

Originality/value

The current study confirmed the stimulus‐organism‐response relationship by showing that product presentation (online stimuli) affected emotion and attitude towards the site (emotional/cognitive states) and consequently influences purchase intent (response). Thus, this study provides practical, useful information to web site designers and online retailers by indicating that how web site atmospherics lead to positive consumer shopping outcomes.

Keywords

Citation

Kim, J., Kim, M. and Lennon, S.J. (2009), "Effects of web site atmospherics on consumer responses: music and product presentation", Direct Marketing: An International Journal, Vol. 3 No. 1, pp. 4-19. https://doi.org/10.1108/17505930910945705

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited