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Purpose – Blogging has become part of a consumer's decision making process when shopping online; however, the understanding of blog recommendation's effect on consumer purchase decision is still vague. The purpose of this study is to examine whether the blog reader's trusting belief in the blogger is significant in relation to the perceived usefulness of the blogger's recommendations; and how the blog reader's perceptions influence his/her attitude and purchasing behavior online. The moderating effect of blogger's reputation on readers’ purchasing intentions is also tested. Design/methodology/approach – Based on various theories, a model was proposed in this study. A survey involving 327 blog readers as participants was analyzed in the empirical study to investigate whether the usefulness of bloggers’ recommendations and trusting beliefs toward blogger had influence on consumers’ attitudes and behavioral intentions toward online shopping. Findings – The results indicated that perceived usefulness of bloggers’ recommendations and trust had significant influential effect on blog users’ attitude towards and intention to shop online. Moreover, the findings showed that different determinants affected the users of perceived‐high‐reputation and perceived‐low‐reputation blogs. Originality/value – The findings suggest bloggers’ electronic word‐of‐mouth (eWOM) to be a promising marketing strategy for increasing sales. The marketers should provide free trial products and services to the perceived‐high‐reputation bloggers who, as valued opinion leaders, will influence and prompt others to shop online through a trusting effect. As for perceived‐low‐reputation bloggers, the marketing strategists should strive to emphasize the usefulness of products and services being marketed, so these perceived‐low‐reputation bloggers can focus more on describing the advantages and benefits of products or services discussed in their blogs.
Internet Research – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 25, 2013
Keywords: Blogging; Recommendations; Online shopping; Trust; Reputation; Electronic commerce; Blogs; Consumer behaviour
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