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Consumers’ desire to interact with a salesperson during e-shopping: development of a scale

Yun Jung Lee (Robert B. Willumstad School of Business, Adelphi University, Garden City, New York, USA)
Alan J. Dubinsky (Dillard College of Business Administration, Midwestern State University, Wichita Falls, Texas, USA) (Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA)

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management

ISSN: 0959-0552

Article publication date: 9 January 2017

1815

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a desire to interact with a salesperson scale and to explore possible tools for replacing salespeople on e-commerce websites.

Design/methodology/approach

For the exploratory phase of this paper, Study 1 used in-depth consumer interviews. Quantitative surveys were conducted for Studies 2 and 3.

Findings

A two-dimensional (instrumental and autotelic) eight-item scale for desire to interact with a salesperson was developed. The results of Study 3 suggested that e-tailers can increase customer satisfaction by implementing effective customer-based information (e.g. customer reviews) and e-contact features (e.g. live chatting with a salesperson).

Research limitations/implications

Although the current study validated the scale, a future study should further validate this scale in different contexts.

Originality/value

The present research was the first attempt to develop a desire to interact with a salesperson scale. This new scale now makes it possible to acknowledge differences in a desire to interact with a salesperson across demographics, product types, shopping purposes, etc., which should improve customer experience management.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors gratefully acknowledge the invaluable input, guidance, and encouragement from the editor and reviewers, as well as Professors Richard Feinberg, Sejin Ha, Xiran Lehto, Jungkun Park, and Richard Widdows.

Citation

Lee, Y.J. and Dubinsky, A.J. (2017), "Consumers’ desire to interact with a salesperson during e-shopping: development of a scale", International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol. 45 No. 1, pp. 20-39. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJRDM-04-2016-0058

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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