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Article

Jengchung Victor Chen, Huyen Thi Le and Sinh Thi Thu Tran

To provide better services to customers, especially immediate responses and 24/7 availability, businesses are implementing text-based automated conversational agents, i.e…

Abstract

Purpose

To provide better services to customers, especially immediate responses and 24/7 availability, businesses are implementing text-based automated conversational agents, i.e. chatbots on their social platforms and websites. Chatbots are required to not only provide customers with necessary consultancy and guidance but also communicate friendly and socially. Based on the cognitive fit theory, this study attempts to examine the role of chatbot as a decision aid and how the match between information presentation in forms of decisional guidance and communication style and the shopping task influences consumers' perceived cognitive fit and decision performance outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach

A 2 x 2 x 2 between subject online experiment was conducted to identify which kind of decisional guidance (suggestive and informative guidance) and communication style (task-oriented vs social-oriented style) are the most appropriate for each type of shopping task (searching vs browsing task).

Findings

The findings show that when customers interact with chatbots, they will perceive higher cognitive fit if the chatbots provide them with suggestive guidance and communicate in a friendly style especially when they perform a searching task.

Originality/value

This study is the first attempt to understand the role of chatbots as a decision aid to customers using the communicative language. This study also tries to explore the cognitive fit theory in a novel way, and we propose the information presentation in forms of communicative language rather than matrices, tables and graphs.

Details

Internet Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

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Article

Wibke Heidig, Daniel Wentzel, Torsten Tomczak, Annika Wiecek and Martin Faltl

In many industries, customers are offered the opportunity to revise their initial decision in return for a superior but more expensive service option, a selling technique…

Abstract

Purpose

In many industries, customers are offered the opportunity to revise their initial decision in return for a superior but more expensive service option, a selling technique that is typically referred to as upselling. Drawing on the research on customers’ service experience, cognitive effort, decision justification, and goal framing, the purpose of this paper is to conceptualize upselling as a two-stage decision process where the process of making the first decision (i.e. deciding on an initial service option) affects the final decision (i.e. the decision for or against the upsell offer).

Design/methodology/approach

First, qualitative interviews were conducted both with customers as well as managers. Moreover, in two experimental studies, different scenarios depicted an upsell situation that is common in many service encounters. After choosing a hotel room or rental car for reservation, participants were confronted with differently framed arguments to induce a shift toward an enhanced but more costly version of the initially chosen service option.

Findings

The qualitative interviews reveal that upselling is a common practice in many companies and that the manner in which the upsell is communicated has a considerable influence on its effectiveness. The first experimental study finds that the cognitive effort that customers expend in the initial choice moderates the effect of upsell messages using different goal frames. The second experimental study shows that customers are only affected by different goal frames when they feel responsible for the outcome of the final decision.

Practical implications

The findings provide a number of useful guidelines for designing upselling strategies and may also be used to segment a firm’s customer base. On a more general level, this research also raises managers’ awareness of the sequential nature of upselling decisions and the customer’s intrinsic need to justify an upsell choice.

Originality/value

The studies contribute to the literature on customers’ service experience and upselling strategies. Upselling is conceptualized as a two-stage process in which customers’ experience in one phase influences their behavior in later stages. The underlying psychological mechanisms of this effect are also highlighted by referring to customers’ need to justify service choices to themselves.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 28 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article

Chi-Wen Chen

Recent years have witnessed the development of a variety of rating systems but the authors have little knowledge about their impact on users’ perceptions of information…

Abstract

Purpose

Recent years have witnessed the development of a variety of rating systems but the authors have little knowledge about their impact on users’ perceptions of information quality, cognitive decision effort, and enjoyment. The purpose of this paper is to understand the potential cognitive fit underlining the relationship between rating systems types (i.e. five-star, binary-visual, and binary-textual) and tasks (i.e. purchase-decision and browsing tasks) in the context of shopping websites.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 191 subjects were obtained. This study conducted an experiment with a 2×3 between-subject factorial design. The first dimension is a task that has two conditions (purchasing vs browsing). The second dimension is a type of rating system that has three different types (binary-textual, binary-visual, and five-star).

Findings

The results show that the cognitive fit may occur when individuals use a five-star rating system to help them make a purchasing decision and when they use a binary-visual rating system while browsing. This fit might increase perceived information quality while decrease cognitive decision efforts, and in turn raise intention to adopt the systems. Moreover, five-star rating systems can make users feel more fun and enjoyment than binary-textual and visual rating systems, regardless of task type.

Research limitations/implications

This study focuses on three main rating systems that are popular on shopping websites. Nevertheless, few other rating systems exist in the market such as unitary or ten-star rating systems. Further studies can consider other types of rating systems and address, in addition to representation, the issue of information granularity (i.e. unitary, binary, five-star, and ten-star rating systems).

Practical implications

The results of this study could provide design principles for web designers in determining which rating systems best match the websites they are developing. If the websites or specific webpages are more utilitarian oriented (hedonic oriented), five-star rating systems (binary-visual rating systems) are more appropriate.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the rating system literature by examining the cognitive fit underlining the relationship between rating systems types and tasks. Importantly, this study extends cognitive fit theory by considering affective responses, that is, perceived enjoyment and intention to continue to use.

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Article

Yan Yu, Ben Qianqian Liu, Jin-Xing Hao and Chuanqi Wang

Prior literature indicates conflicting effects of online product information, which may complicate or simplify consumer purchase decisions. Therefore, the purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Prior literature indicates conflicting effects of online product information, which may complicate or simplify consumer purchase decisions. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to investigate how different online product information (i.e. the choice set size and the popularity information and its presentation) affect consumers’ decision making and the related market outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach

This research relies on information-processing theories and social learning theory. By stepwise conducting two 2×2 within-subject factorial design experiments, this research examines the effects of the choice set size, product popularity information and product presentation on consumers’ decision making and the aggregated market outcomes.

Findings

The results show that product popularity information led consumers to either simplify or complicate their decision strategy, depending on the size of the choice sets. Additionally, presenting products by their popularity in descending order resulted in consumers making decisions with a larger decision bias. The results also show that the presence of product popularity was more likely to forge a “superstar” structure in a large market.

Practical implications

The research suggests that e-retailers and e-marketplace operators should carefully utilize product popularity information. Multiple mechanisms that shape different shopping environments with different orders are necessary to create a long-tailed market structure.

Originality/value

This study found the mixed effects of product popularity information when it is presented in different environments (i.e. the large/small choice set and the sorted/randomized product presentation). The overuse of popularity information may induce consumers’ decision bias.

Details

Internet Research, vol. 30 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1066-2243

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Article

Rex Eugene Pereira

Develops and tests a general model for understanding the influence of query‐based decision aids (QBDA) on consumer decision making in the electronic commerce environment…

Abstract

Develops and tests a general model for understanding the influence of query‐based decision aids (QBDA) on consumer decision making in the electronic commerce environment. The results show that the use of well‐designed query‐based decision aids leads to increased satisfaction with the decision process and increased confidence in judgements. The number of stages of phased narrowing of the consideration set was higher in the case of subjects who had access to the query‐based decision aids. The mediating variables through which this influence occurs are size of the consideration set, similarity among the alternatives in the consideration set, cognitive decision effort, and perceived cost savings. The size of the consideration set and the similarity among the alternatives in the consideration set were higher in the case of subjects who had access to the query‐based decision aid. Subjects who had access to the query‐based decision aid perceived an increased cost savings and a lower cognitive decision effort associated with the purchase decision. This research is done in the context of consumers searching for information on the World Wide Web prior to the purchase of cars.

Details

Logistics Information Management, vol. 12 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-6053

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Article

Rose Trevelyan

The central question of this paper is, “What determines an entrepreneur's effort on different tasks?” The paper aims to address this question.

Abstract

Purpose

The central question of this paper is, “What determines an entrepreneur's effort on different tasks?” The paper aims to address this question.

Design/methodology/approach

Propositions about the impact cognitive processes have on entrepreneurial effort across different tasks are developed. These propositions draw on self‐regulatory theory, in particular our understanding of regulatory focus and self‐efficacy.

Findings

It is argued that a promotion orientation motivates effort on explorative tasks, and a prevention orientation motivates effort on exploitative tasks. Further, it is proposed that high self‐efficacy motivates effort on action tasks, but high self‐efficacy reduces effort on judgment tasks.

Practical implications

One implication of these propositions for entrepreneurs is to understand self‐regulatory processes and to consciously decide how much effort to put into different tasks, rather than relying on (hidden) preferences. Another implication is for those involved in selecting and developing entrepreneurs. That implication is that entrepreneurs' self‐regulatory processes can inhibit effective effort. These processes can be managed to increase effectiveness.

Originality/value

By introducing task type into the discussion of self‐regulation and entrepreneurial effort, a more fine‐grained understanding of cognitive processes in actual entrepreneurial activities is developed.

Details

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2554

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Book part

Audrey N. Scarlata, Kelly L. Williams and Brandon Vagner

The increasing availability of eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) financial statements motivates additional investigation of whether XBRL’s search-facilitating…

Abstract

The increasing availability of eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) financial statements motivates additional investigation of whether XBRL’s search-facilitating technology (SFT) and enhanced viewing capabilities facilitate information search and improve financial analysis decision quality and efficiency. This experiment investigates how using XBRL technology to view financial statements influences novice investors’ decision quality by affecting decision processes such as search strategy and effort, as well as decision efficiency (accuracy/effort) in a financial statement analysis task. In the experiment, randomly assigned student participants (n = 102) invested in companies using either static PDF-formatted or XBRL-enabled financial statements. No differences in decision quality (i.e., accuracy) due to technology use were observed. However, participants in the XBRL condition examined less information, used more directed search processes, and evidenced greater efficiency than did participants assigned to the PDF condition. Hence, the results suggest that XBRL SFT affects the use of differing decision processes relative to PDF technology.

Details

Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-346-8

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Article

Kofi Osei-Frimpong

Through the lens of self-determination theory (SDT), the purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of autonomous and controlled motivational regulations in driving…

Abstract

Purpose

Through the lens of self-determination theory (SDT), the purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of autonomous and controlled motivational regulations in driving consumer participation in social brand engagement (SBE) practices. In addition, the moderating effects of cognitive effort and consumer demographic variables (age and gender) are examined.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed model is tested by employing a quantitative survey design consisting of 832 consumers with prior experience in engaging with brands on social media. The respondents were conveniently interviewed using online questionnaire. The model estimation was done through structural equation modelling with AMOS 23.0.

Findings

The findings indicate that intrinsic, integrated, introjected and external motivational regulations significantly influence consumer participation in SBE activities, whereas identified regulation does not. Furthermore, while age and gender presented mixed interaction effects on the paths examined, cognitive effort does not moderate the influence of autonomous and controlled motivational regulations on SBE participation.

Research limitations/implications

This study employed a cross-sectional survey to explore consumer motivation and cognitive effort in SBE practices. As an exploratory study, the findings may be limited and not conclusive, which could limit the generalisation of the results reported.

Practical implications

This study demonstrates a need for retailing managers to understand customers’ varying intentions or needs in participating in online SBE activities As a result, retail managers need to adopt social media strategies that could elicit interest and curiosity on the part of the customer to excite them to participate in the brand social interactions.

Originality/value

This research contributes to the conceptual understanding of SBE through the application of SDT, and contends that cognitive effort does not moderate consumer participation in SBE practices. Also, the mixed findings resulting from the moderation test of age and gender sheds light on specific types of regulated motivations that are either moderated or not in relation to these demographic variables.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 47 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article

Lutz Kaufmann, Craig R. Carter and Christian Buhrmann

The nascent behavioral supply management (BSM) research stream has raised the level of attention given to deviations from the standard assumptions of the rational paradigm…

Abstract

Purpose

The nascent behavioral supply management (BSM) research stream has raised the level of attention given to deviations from the standard assumptions of the rational paradigm in economics. The adaptation of cognitive heuristics, which add vulnerability to judgment and decision making, creates a pressing need to identify and develop mitigation strategies to debias decision making in the supply chain management environment. The purpose of this paper is to investigate debiasing measures, corresponding contextual variables in the supplier selection process, and their implications for financial decision effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors used a large‐scale empirical survey among 306 buyers to investigate the relationships among individual and organizational contextual factors, debiasing measures in the supplier selection decision, and the financial effectiveness of the supplier selection decision.

Findings

It was found that organizational and individual contextual factors have differing effects on the use of debiasing approaches in the supplier selection decision. Further, the debiasing tactics can have a positive (in the case of supplier selection task decomposing) or a negative (in the case of an interactional challenging of the supplier selection) impact on the financial effectiveness of the supplier selection decision. These findings suggest that supply managers must better understand the contextual factors that influence the supplier selection decision, and carefully choose the correct debiasing tactics when selecting suppliers.

Originality/value

This paper relaxes the economic assumption of rational actors and addresses the need to identify and use debiasing tactics in supply chain management contexts. The research also complements the broader‐based behavioral decision‐making literature, which has often relied upon experimental methodologies that use undergraduate or MBA students, by employing a survey‐based approach with supply managers as key informants.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 42 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

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Article

Seong Wook Chae and Kun Chang Lee

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how employing human brands affects consumers' decision quality in an online shopping environment by analysing visual attention…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how employing human brands affects consumers' decision quality in an online shopping environment by analysing visual attention using an eye‐tracking technique.

Design/methodology/approach

The experimental design used to examine the effect of human brands in an online shopping environment was a two‐factor repeated measure with two levels for each factor. The first factor of the design was a within‐factor measure of the product type, and the second was a between‐factor measure of the level of perceived decision quality. For this experiment 38 healthy participants were recruited at a university in South Korea.

Findings

First employing human brands in an online shop influences consumers' perceived decision quality. Second the results support a significant difference in perceived product trust between the two perceived decision quality levels. Finally the product type influences consumers' perceived trust towards the product.

Research limitations/implications

This research has the limitations of a relatively small sample size and the use of a sample of university students, which may not be representative of the general population. Future researchers could utilise experiments to analyse the message area of the screen for detailed product descriptions and include various samples, which could result in additional insights and generalised experimental results.

Practical implications

Employing human brands can improve consumers' decision making processes and enhance the quality of their decisions by reducing cognitive effort and appealing to consumers emotionally through heuristic choices. In addition it can increase trust towards products and, furthermore, lead consumers to think positively about the quality of the decisions they make. The paper suggests that companies apply human brands in online shops to improve consumers' decision quality and obtain competitive advantage.

Originality/value

One of this paper's contributions is employing a multi‐method approach, a self‐reported questionnaire and eye‐movement data, to gain a deeper understanding of the data when observing a complex phenomenon, as consumers themselves may not be aware of their reactions in such situations.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 37 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

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