An empirical examination of antecedents and consequences of e-compulsive buying tendencies: the moderating role of psychological factors

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Vinod K. Shanmugam (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Over the past decade, online shopping appears to have been a common activity in this technological world where consumers have the ability to engage in all stages of decision making related to products and/or services. However, researchers have contended that the Internet may present a paradoxical situation in today's socio-technological environment for online consumers who have engaged in different online activities. On the one hand, the Internet may help one to improve relationships with inter-groups, create social recognition of an individual, and enhance quality of life. On the other hand, the Internet may also cause one to experience unregulated online consumption behavior, which may create harmful consequences. Virtual communities or online groups are a group of people who share common interests and practices, and these people tend to communicate with each other on a regular basis over the Internet via a common location (e.g., social networking websites). The interaction among virtual communities' members may cause some form of addictive behaviors among the users. Given the scarcity of empirical work related to this phenomenon, the current study attempts to develop and empirically test the conceptual model of E-compulsive buying tendencies within the context of understanding its antecedents (i.e., characteristics of virtual community participants) and consequences (i.e., one's well-being and internet addiction). In addition, the study investigates the moderating effects of psychological factors on the relationships between characteristics of virtual community participants and E-compulsive buying tendencies. Data were collected from a convenience sample of college students attending the University of North Carolina at Greensboro during the spring 2011 semester. The final sample was comprised of 192 college students. Of these, 175 were female and 115 were Caucasian. Approximately 90% were in the traditional student age category of 17 to 25 years old. A series of multiple regressions and simple regressions were performed to test all hypotheses. Results revealed that three characteristics of virtual communities' participants (i.e., normative conformity, online participation level, and perceived internet expertise) are the major drivers of E-compulsive buying tendencies, which in turn positively affected internet addiction. Results further revealed that the interaction between self-regulation and informative conformity is likely to reduce the tendency to be an E-compulsive buyer. Also, the interaction between emotional and mood enhancement and online participation level is likely to enhance the possibility of the participant to be an E-compulsive buyer. Implications for academics and virtual community policy makers are offered. Limitations and future research directions are identified.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2011
Marketing, Internet, E-compulsive buying tendencies, Psychological Factors, Antecedents
Electronic commerce $x Psychological aspects
Impulse buying $x Psychological aspects
Online social networks $x Psychological aspects

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