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Article

J. Akeroyd and A. Foster

A short survey of the use of online information retrieval is presented and shows that 70% of academic libraries were users. The main justifications for implementation were…

Abstract

A short survey of the use of online information retrieval is presented and shows that 70% of academic libraries were users. The main justifications for implementation were felt to be cost‐effectiveness and greater retrieval capability. Most services were directed at academic and research staff and few at undergraduates. At this stage only a small number of trained searchers exist in each institution. The pros and cons of charging for services are evaluated and linked to the results of American surveys.

Details

Online Review, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-314X

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Article

Hanyu Xiao

This study aims to describe the general picture of the competition in multichannel expert services in duopoly market and discuss how the quality difference may affects the…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to describe the general picture of the competition in multichannel expert services in duopoly market and discuss how the quality difference may affects the competition between service providers with different quality levels, where both providers offer face-to-face channel and one of providers offers online channel additionally and service quality that consumers have heterogeneous preferences for is vertically differentiated. These results can be used to determine which service providers should offer online expert services and understand the competition in multichannel expert services in duopoly.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses the stylized vertical differentiation model to investigate the role of quality in expert services market, assuming that two services providers offer the same services with different quality levels and one of them having additional online services. Taking into account the differences of services from products and the particularity of online service, this paper extends the vertical differentiation model to expert services market.

Findings

The quality difference is the key factor in the competition of expert services. Service prices and the profits of providers, independent of the quality levels, are positively related to the quality difference, whereas the demand of online services is in the opposite direction regardless of which provider offers online channel. It demonstrates that provider with low-quality level should open online channel from the point of view of social welfare if it is closely related to the expert services, even though any provider can make more profits by opening online channel.

Research limitations/implications

This extended vertical differentiation model, taking into account the importance of vertical differentiation in expert service, ignores the horizontal differentiation. More accurate strategies for multichannel expert services providers with what level of the quality a provider should offer is needed in future work. Moreover, this paper does not consider the different waiting costs of consumers in face-to-face channel and assumes that their problem will be solved eventually.

Originality/value

To the best of the author’s knowledge, no study has focused on the quality difference in multichannel expert services market or discussed how to offer online expert services in the duopoly market. This study extends the vertical differentiation model to the multichannel expert service market. Therefore, it fills this research gap and extends research to expert services market in the new network environment, aiming to help understand the competition in multichannel expert services.

Details

Journal of Modelling in Management, vol. 14 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5664

Keywords

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Article

Laurel A. Clyde

Online information services are increasingly being used in schools and school libraries, both as a source of information and as a means of teaching information skills…

Abstract

Online information services are increasingly being used in schools and school libraries, both as a source of information and as a means of teaching information skills. Types of online services available include cataloguing information services, bibliographic services, full‐text and statistical information services, videotex services, local and special interest services and electronic bulletin boards. These are discussed in relation to current educational theory and the possible curriculum applications in schools.

Details

The Electronic Library, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

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Article

Debbie Isobel Keeling, Ko de Ruyter, Sahar Mousavi and Angus Laing

Policymakers push online health services delivery, relying on consumers to independently engage with online services. Yet, a growing cluster of vulnerable patients do not…

Abstract

Purpose

Policymakers push online health services delivery, relying on consumers to independently engage with online services. Yet, a growing cluster of vulnerable patients do not engage with or disengage from these innovative services. There is a need to understand how to resolve the tension between the push of online health service provision and unengagement by a contingent of health-care consumers. Thus, this study aims to explore the issue of digital unengagement (DU) (i.e. the active or passive choice to engage or disengage) with online health services to better inform service design aligned to actual consumer need.

Design/methodology/approach

Adopting a survey methodology, a group of 486 health services consumers with a self-declared (acute or chronic) condition were identified. Of this group, 110 consumers were classified as digitally unengaged and invited to write open-ended narratives about their unengagement with online health services. As a robustness check, these drivers were contrasted with the drivers identified by a group of digitally engaged consumers with a self-declared condition (n = 376).

Findings

DU is conceptualized, and four levels of DU drivers are identified. These levels represent families of interrelated drivers that in combination shape DU: subjective incompatibility (misalignment of online services with need, lifestyle and alternative services); enactment vulnerability (personal vulnerabilities around control, comprehension and emotional management of online services); sharing essentiality (centrality of face-to-face co-creation opportunities plus conflicting social dependencies); and strategic scepticism (scepticism of the strategic value of online services). Identified challenges at each level are the mechanisms through which drivers impact on DU. These DU drivers are distinct from those of the digitally engaged group.

Research limitations/implications

Adding to a nascent but growing literature on consumer unengagement, and complementing the engagement literature, the authors conceptualize DU, positioning it as distinct from, not simply a lack of, consumer engagement. The authors explore the drivers of DU to provide insight into how DU occurs. Encapsulating the dynamic nature of DU, these drivers map the building blocks that could help to address the issue of aligning the push of online service provision with the pull from consumers.

Practical implications

This paper offers insights on how to encourage consumers to engage with online health services by uncovering the drivers of DU that, typically, are hidden from service designers and providers impacting provision and uptake.

Social implications

There is a concern that there will be an unintentional disenfranchisement of vulnerable segments of society with a generic policy emphasis on pushing online services. The paper sheds light on the unforeseen personal and social issues that lead to disenfranchisement by giving voice to digitally unengaged consumers with online health services.

Originality/value

Offering a novel view from a hard-to-reach digitally unengaged group, the conceptualization of DU, identified drivers and challenges inform policymakers and practitioners on how to facilitate online health service (re)engagement and prevent marginalization of segments of society.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 53 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

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Article

Zhilin Yang and Xiang Fang

This exploratory research intends to extend our understanding of service quality and customer satisfaction within the setting of online securities brokerage services

Abstract

This exploratory research intends to extend our understanding of service quality and customer satisfaction within the setting of online securities brokerage services. Based upon conceptual frameworks from the areas of services marketing and information systems management, the authors uncovered 52 items across 16 major service quality dimensions by content analysis of 740 customer reviews. The results indicate that primary service quality dimensions leading to online customer satisfaction, with the exception of ease of use, are closely related to traditional services while key factors leading to dissatisfaction are tied to information systems quality. In addition, major drivers of satisfaction and dissatisfaction are identified at the sub‐dimensional level. Theoretical contribution and managerial implications of the findings are further discussed.

Details

International Journal of Service Industry Management, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-4233

Keywords

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Article

Francesca Dall'Olmo Riley, Daniele Scarpi and Angelo Manaresi

This research aims to investigate consumers' likelihood of purchasing services online in two countries, the UK and Italy, which differ significantly in the population's…

Abstract

Purpose

This research aims to investigate consumers' likelihood of purchasing services online in two countries, the UK and Italy, which differ significantly in the population's uptake of internet shopping. Four influences are considered: service type, contact with service provider prior to online purchase, familiarity with service provider, and experience with internet purchasing.

Design/methodology/approach

For motor insurance and travel, respondents were asked to indicate the probability of purchasing on the internet the service of a provider they had used before, after a face‐to‐face contact with the provider, and also without prior contact with the service provider. Respondents were asked the same questions also for a provider they had not used before.

Findings

Differences in the relative uptake of internet shopping in the two countries did not alter the general results: a need for face‐to‐face contact with the service provider prior to online purchase and a preference for buying services from a familiar provider. Previous general experience of online shopping increases the likelihood of purchasing online.

Research limitations/implications

Future studies should examine a broader range of service categories and should consider travel products of different complexity.

Practical implications

Online/offline integration of service provision is very important, as consumers highly appreciate some form of human contact, prior to online purchase, even in countries where consumers are more used to shopping from home.

Originality/value

The paper provides a better understanding of the influences on consumers' likelihood of purchasing services online. Findings are generalized in two countries, with different uptake of internet shopping.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 23 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article

Few issues in recent times have so provoked debate and dissention within the library field as has the concept of fees for user services. The issue has aroused the passions…

Abstract

Few issues in recent times have so provoked debate and dissention within the library field as has the concept of fees for user services. The issue has aroused the passions of our profession precisely because its roots and implications extend far beyond the confines of just one service discipline. Its reflection is mirrored in national debates about the proper spheres of the public and private sectors—in matters of information generation and distribution, certainly, but in a host of other social ramifications as well, amounting virtually to a debate about the most basic values which we have long assumed to constitute the very framework of our democratic and humanistic society.

Details

Collection Building, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0160-4953

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Article

Rajasree K. Rajamma, Audhesh K. Paswan and Gopala Ganesh

This study seeks to explore the idea that consumers select a particular shopping mode – i.e. bricks and mortar versus online outlet – based on their perceptions about…

Abstract

Purpose

This study seeks to explore the idea that consumers select a particular shopping mode – i.e. bricks and mortar versus online outlet – based on their perceptions about whether a product or service is best bought from one or the other. It aims to posit that this perception is associated with the importance allocated to various shopping motivation dimensions.

Design/methodology/approach

Data for this study were collected using a self‐administered mail survey from 689 internet‐enabled US households. They represent a 28 percent response from 2,500 households that received the survey. Extensive non‐response analysis ruled out serious bias in the data.

Findings

The results from this empirical study suggest that different shopping motivations indeed influence perceptions of service type and shopping mode congruence differently. In addition, the results also suggest that services are more likely to be associated with the online shopping mode, whereas more tangible products are likely to be associated with bricks and mortar stores.

Originality/value

The findings have significant implications for services retail managers of both bricks and mortar and online service outlets in the areas of segmentations, targeting, and retail mix strategies. Apparently, consumers also tend to group related services or products into homogeneous shopping baskets based on their perception of congruence between the product or service and the shopping mode – online versus bricks and mortar store. These findings should help a manager plan for retailing mix strategies, catering to various shopping motivation dimensions, thus enhancing consumer satisfaction. In addition, the results hold important implications in the areas of segmentation and targeting decisions.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article

Mohini Singh

E‐services are important in B2C e‐commerce for managing customer relations and enhancing sales. In the electronic world the customer and the merchant do not meet…

Abstract

E‐services are important in B2C e‐commerce for managing customer relations and enhancing sales. In the electronic world the customer and the merchant do not meet face‐to‐face, and the clients are more discerning with increased options and solutions available to them online. With the click of a mouse a customer can find another provider. As customers embrace e‐commerce their expectations about service, support, and how they make purchases are changing. Services to customers offered electronically to enhance their online shopping experience include search support, e‐response to customer queries, orders and transactions, e‐payment, e‐transaction record management, e‐assurance and trust, e‐help and other online support in the B2C e‐space. This paper discusses the role of e‐services in B2C e‐commerce and how they can be applied to enhance the online customer shopping experience. Findings of two research projects that shed some light on both business and customer perspectives of the role of e‐services in the B2C e‐commerce are launched in this paper.

Details

Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, vol. 12 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-4529

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Article

Lalith Wickramanayake

The present study was carried out with the intention of examining what type of instruction applications and help tools have been used to serve clientele via academic…

Abstract

Purpose

The present study was carried out with the intention of examining what type of instruction applications and help tools have been used to serve clientele via academic library websites and web pages, and how Sri Lankan academic libraries instruct and help users via their library websites and web pages.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample study comprised only 14 academic library websites and web pages out of 223, which were accessible and necessarily presented instruction applications and help tools. Two coding sheets were prepared separately for instruction and help to include classified data, and then the frequency counted from each category by browsing the sample recorded in the coders for analysis.

Findings

The results confirmed that the quality of academic library websites in Sri Lanka in providing online instruction and help was dependent on different variables. The development of above online services remains in its infancy. Most important instruction applications and help tools have not been utilized by the majority of websites in academic libraries. Inaccessibility of such services via the library web reflects not only their malfunction in online instruction and help, but also onsite services of some areas in academic libraries.

Research limitations/implications

Nonexistence of websites or web pages and lack of enough information in library websites caused the exclusion of most of the libraries in the country from inclusion in the sample; this in turn affected this study by limiting it to academic libraries only.

Practical implications

The majority of recommendations originated from the study can be generalized for both web and online service development of any type of library in Sri Lanka.

Originality/value

The deficiency of research on library websites in Sri Lanka provides no clear image regarding the existing situation of online library services. Thus this study contributes towards addressing this gap in the literature and features distinctiveness within the available literature.

Details

The Electronic Library, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

Keywords

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