Building on the Chinese guanxi perspective, the purpose of this paper is to develop a theoretical model that explains the indirect effects of social support from friends on social commerce intentions, as mediated through the relational aspects that potential buyers develop with sellers.
Hypotheses are tested with partial least squares (PLS)-graph applied to data collected via a survey of social media users (n=511). SPSS and PLS-graph are the statistical analysis tools used in this study.
Relationship exists in social commerce interactions and its quality can be captured by swift guanxi and trust. These swift relationships matter as they drive users’ behavioral intentions on social commerce sites. The informational and social support people receive from friends helps in improving the relationship quality and can indirectly influence user behaviors on these sites.
This study has relied on a convenient sampling and this may limit the generalizability of the findings. Future research should employ broader and more random sampling techniques to re-validate and extend the findings.
The interpersonal aspect of relationship quality has received little attention in the social commerce literature. This study develops a theoretical model that explains consumers’ intention in social commerce. The findings reveal the mechanisms through which different types of social support indirectly influence social commerce intentions. They provide a unique glimpse into consumer behavior in Chinese settings, in which the guanxi aspect of relationship quality highly matters.
This work was supported by the grants from the National Science Foundation of China (71501078, 71332001, 71633002, 71333004), a grant from the Excellent Young Teacher Foundation in Guangdong Province (YQ2015031), and a grant from the Philosophical and Social Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (GD14CGL10).
Lin, J., Li, L., Yan, Y. and Turel, O. (2018), "Understanding Chinese consumer engagement in social commerce: The roles of social support and swift guanxi", Internet Research, Vol. 28 No. 1, pp. 2-22. https://doi.org/10.1108/IntR-11-2016-0349Download as .RIS
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