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20 September 2019

  • Feeling Confident and Smart with Webrooming: Understanding the Consumer's Path to Satisfaction

    Publication date: August 2019

    Source: Journal of Interactive Marketing, Volume 47

    Author(s): Carlos Flavián, Raquel Gurrea, Carlos Orús

    Abstract

    The multichannel marketing literature consistently shows that consumers who use multiple channels in their purchase journeys are more satisfied, loyal, and can be more profitable, than single-channel consumers. However, there is little research investigating how specific channel combinations affect the customer experience. Recognizing that webrooming (research products online, purchase offline) is the prevalent form of cross-channel shopping, this paper examines its influence on the consumer's search process satisfaction. The results of three studies combining qualitative, survey, and experimental methods show that webrooming leads to more satisfaction than showrooming behaviors. Furthermore, we find that webrooming makes consumers feel more confident and like “smart shoppers.” Both factors subsequently determine satisfaction. Perceptions of money savings also affect search process satisfaction. Importantly, saving time and/or effort during the purchase process (convenience) has no influence on satisfaction with cross-channel shopping. The results are robust across shopping motivations and product categories. Theoretical implications and proposals for effective channel integration are offered.

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