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Investigating chatbot users’ e-satisfaction and patronage intention through social presence and flow: Indian online travel agencies (OTAs)

Nisha Pradeepa S.P. (Department of Management Studies, B. S. Abdur Rahman Crescent Institute of Science and Technology, Chennai, India)
Asokk D. (Department of Management Studies, B. S. Abdur Rahman Crescent Institute of Science and Technology, Chennai, India)
Prasanna S. (Department of Management Studies, B. S. Abdur Rahman Crescent Institute of Science and Technology, Chennai, India)
Ansari Sarwar Alam (Department of Marketing, Universal Business School, Mumbai, India)

Journal of Systems and Information Technology

ISSN: 1328-7265

Article publication date: 12 February 2024

Issue publication date: 29 March 2024

274

Abstract

Purpose

The concept of ubiquitous assimilation in e-commerce, denoting the seamless integration of technologies into customer shopping experiences, has played a pivotal role in aiding e-satisfaction and, consequently, fostering patronage intention. Among these, text-based chatbots are significant innovations. In light of this, the paper aims to develop a conceptual framework and comprehend the patronage behaviour of artificial intelligence-enabled chatbot users by using chatbot usability cues and to determine whether the social presence and flow theories impact e-satisfaction, which leads to users’ patronage intention. The current research provides insights into online travel agencies (OTAs), a crucial segment within the travel and tourism sector. Given the significance of building a loyal clientele and cultivating patronage in this industry, these insights are of paramount importance for achieving sustained profitability and growth.

Design/methodology/approach

The research framework primarily focused on the factors that precede e-satisfaction and patronage intention among chatbot users, which include social presence, flow, perceived anthropomorphism and need for human interaction. The researchers collected the data by surveying 397 OTA chatbot users by using an online questionnaire. The data of this cross-sectional study were analysed using covariance-based structural equation modelling.

Findings

Findings reveal that e-satisfaction is positively linked with patronage intention and the variables of social presence and flow impact e-satisfaction along with chatbot usability cues. There were direct and indirect relations between chatbot usability and e-satisfaction. Moreover, the personal attributes, “need for human interaction” and, “perceived anthropomorphism” were found to moderate relations between chatbot usability cues, social presence and flow.

Originality/value

The impact of chatbot’s usability cues/attributes on e-satisfaction, along with perceived attributes – social presence and flow in the realm of OTAs contributes to the human–chatbot interaction literature. Moreover, the interacting effects of perceived anthropomorphism and the need for human interaction are unique in the current contextual relations.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

All authors read and approved the final manuscript. No funding was received to assist with the preparation of this manuscript. The authors have no competing interests to declare that are relevant to the content of this article.

Author contribution: Nisha Pradeepa S P, Conceptualization, Investigation, Writing – Original Draft. Asokk D, Conceptualization, Investigation, Review. Prasanna S, Conceptualization, Investigation, Review. Ansari Sarwar Alam, Conceptualization, Investigation, Review.

Citation

S.P., N.P., D., A., S., P. and Alam, A.S. (2024), "Investigating chatbot users’ e-satisfaction and patronage intention through social presence and flow: Indian online travel agencies (OTAs)", Journal of Systems and Information Technology, Vol. 26 No. 1, pp. 89-114. https://doi.org/10.1108/JSIT-04-2023-0062

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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