Get 20M+ Full-Text Papers For Less Than $1.50/day. Start a 14-Day Trial for You or Your Team.

Learn More →

Virtual agents in e‐commerce: representational characteristics for seniors

Virtual agents in e‐commerce: representational characteristics for seniors Purpose – The purpose of this paper is two‐fold: to investigate virtual agent representational characteristics (modality, interaction style, animation, realism, embodiment, and gender) employed by agent software providers in developing commercial and non‐commercial web sites; and to examine older consumers' preferences in these agent characteristics. Design/methodology/approach – Study 1 involves a content analysis of 64 sample web sites of agent providers, and study 2 consists of four focus group interviews conducted with 25 older consumers in the age group of 65‐82 years. Findings – Findings from both studies reveal some important disconnects between agent characteristics (modality, realism, animation, and gender) offered by virtual agent software providers and those preferred by older consumers. As a result, important recommendations are provided for the development of virtual agents for e‐commerce applications to enhance accessibility for older users. Originality/value – No previous studies have investigated which agent characteristics enhance web accessibility and are most preferred by older users in the context of e‐commerce applications. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing Emerald Publishing

Virtual agents in e‐commerce: representational characteristics for seniors

Loading next page...
 
/lp/emerald-publishing/virtual-agents-in-e-commerce-representational-characteristics-for-m0jRIzcMV0
Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
2040-7122
DOI
10.1108/17505931111191492
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is two‐fold: to investigate virtual agent representational characteristics (modality, interaction style, animation, realism, embodiment, and gender) employed by agent software providers in developing commercial and non‐commercial web sites; and to examine older consumers' preferences in these agent characteristics. Design/methodology/approach – Study 1 involves a content analysis of 64 sample web sites of agent providers, and study 2 consists of four focus group interviews conducted with 25 older consumers in the age group of 65‐82 years. Findings – Findings from both studies reveal some important disconnects between agent characteristics (modality, realism, animation, and gender) offered by virtual agent software providers and those preferred by older consumers. As a result, important recommendations are provided for the development of virtual agents for e‐commerce applications to enhance accessibility for older users. Originality/value – No previous studies have investigated which agent characteristics enhance web accessibility and are most preferred by older users in the context of e‐commerce applications.

Journal

Journal of Research in Interactive MarketingEmerald Publishing

Published: Oct 18, 2011

Keywords: Internet; Older consumers; Consumer behaviour; Web sites; Virtual agents; E‐commerce; Aging; Modality; Interaction; Representation

References