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The effects of corporate, review and reviewer characteristics on the helpfulness of online reviews: the moderating role of culture

Jungwon Lee (Department of Corporate Management, Korea University, Sejong, Republic of Korea)
Cheol Park (College of Global Business, Korea University, Sejong, Republic of Korea)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 18 January 2022

Issue publication date: 7 September 2022




The authors investigated the effects of the characteristics of reviews, reviewers and corporate factors on review helpfulness and assessed the role of culture in moderating these relationships.


A research model was established based on the elaboration likelihood and information adoption models. To empirically analyze this research model, 10,611 TripAdvisor reviews from 9 countries were collected. In addition, a zero-inflated negative binomial model and multilevel analysis were employed in consideration of the data characteristics.


The results revealed that review depth had a positive effect on review helpfulness, and review ratings and reviewer expertise had a negative effect. As a corporate characteristic, hotel size had a negative effect on review helpfulness. In addition, the effects of review rating, reviewer expertise and hotel rating exhibited significant differences based on the moderating effects of uncertainty avoidance and power distance level.


The results of this study expand the review helpfulness literature by explaining the inconsistent findings of previous studies via cultural theory. In addition, past research in this field has mainly focused on analyzing only review and reviewer characteristics, while this study demonstrated that company size negatively affects review helpfulness based on the signaling theory. Finally, this study contributes to cultural comparison literature by discovering that the processing of review information by consumers differs according to their cultural background.



Funding: This work was supported by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2020S1A5A2A01044436).


Lee, J. and Park, C. (2022), "The effects of corporate, review and reviewer characteristics on the helpfulness of online reviews: the moderating role of culture", Internet Research, Vol. 32 No. 5, pp. 1562-1594.



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