Consumer Perceptions of CPA WebTrust SM Assurances: Evidence of an Expectation Gap

Consumer Perceptions of CPA WebTrust SM Assurances: Evidence of an Expectation Gap The AICPA/CICA has established WebTrustSM to respond to consumer concerns about the risks of making purchases over the Internet. While WebTrustSM provides assurances related to Internet vendors' business and security practices, it does not provide assurances with respect to product or service quality. This paper examines perceptions of the assurances provided by WebTrustSM and the effect of WebTrustSM on the willingness to make Internet purchases by asking 106 accounting majors to complete a case concerning a company engaging in electronic commerce. Results suggest that, while WebTrustSM provided no additional assurances with respect to business and security practices, it resulted in higher perceived product quality. This paper also finds that product quality is the most important determinant of subjects' willingness to purchase from a Web site displaying the WebTrustSM seal. The results suggest an expectation gap and suggest that the AICPA/CICA should examine closely the value added by WebTrustSM and better communicate its purpose. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Auditing Wiley

Consumer Perceptions of CPA WebTrust SM Assurances: Evidence of an Expectation Gap

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 1999 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
1090-6738
eISSN
1099-1123
DOI
10.1111/1099-1123.00051
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The AICPA/CICA has established WebTrustSM to respond to consumer concerns about the risks of making purchases over the Internet. While WebTrustSM provides assurances related to Internet vendors' business and security practices, it does not provide assurances with respect to product or service quality. This paper examines perceptions of the assurances provided by WebTrustSM and the effect of WebTrustSM on the willingness to make Internet purchases by asking 106 accounting majors to complete a case concerning a company engaging in electronic commerce. Results suggest that, while WebTrustSM provided no additional assurances with respect to business and security practices, it resulted in higher perceived product quality. This paper also finds that product quality is the most important determinant of subjects' willingness to purchase from a Web site displaying the WebTrustSM seal. The results suggest an expectation gap and suggest that the AICPA/CICA should examine closely the value added by WebTrustSM and better communicate its purpose.

Journal

International Journal of AuditingWiley

Published: Jul 1, 1999

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