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Disentangling the relationship between omnichannel integration and customer trust: a response surface analysis

Yang Li (School of Management, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei, China)
Jie Fang (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo, China)
Shuai Yuan (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo, China)
Zhao Cai (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham Ningbo China, Ningbo, China)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 23 May 2023

493

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine whether customer trust is influenced by the congruence and incongruence between customers' perceptions of two types of omnichannel integration—perceived transactional integration (PTI) and perceived relational integration (PRI). The authors further considered the perceived effectiveness of e-commerce institutional mechanisms (PEEIM) as the boundary condition of omnichannel integration's effect.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing upon the stereotype content model, this study hypothesizes the influences of PTI and PRI on customer trust wherein PEEIM moderates the relationships. The research model was empirically examined based on the responses surface analysis of survey data collected from 311 omnichannel customers.

Findings

Results showed that when PTI and PRI are congruent, customers are inclined to trust brands that have high levels of PTI and PRI rather than low levels of PTI and PRI. Moreover, the incongruence between PTI and PRI is positively related to customer trust. PEEIM was found to weaken the congruence effect while strengthening the incongruence effect. The authors also examined customer distrust as another relational outcome to provide a robust check.

Originality/value

This study uncovers customer cognition of omnichannel integration and examines the influences on customer trust, therefore contributing to our understanding of omnichannel integration's effect from the customer perspective. Findings from this research provide insights for brand managers on deploying channel integration strategies and institutional mechanisms to manage customer trust.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Funding: This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NFSC: 72002062).

Citation

Li, Y., Fang, J., Yuan, S. and Cai, Z. (2023), "Disentangling the relationship between omnichannel integration and customer trust: a response surface analysis", Internet Research, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/INTR-03-2022-0222

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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