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Tuning an Online Shop: Consumer Reactions to E-tailers' Service Quality


  • Franz Hackl
  • Bernhard Weiss
  • Rudolf Winter-Ebmer


This paper investigates the impact of service quality in e-tailing on site visits and consumer demand (approximated by the last-click- through concept). We use a large representative data set obtained from a price-comparison site which covers most of the national (Austrian) market on e-tailing. Customers' valuations for a broad range of 15 dif- ferent service characteristics are condensed by factor analysis. Negative binomial regressions analysis is used to measure the impact of princi- pal factors for service quality on referral requests to online shops and last-click-throughs for different product categories.

Suggested Citation

  • Franz Hackl & Bernhard Weiss & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2009. "Tuning an Online Shop: Consumer Reactions to E-tailers' Service Quality," Economics working papers 2009-05, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  • Handle: RePEc:jku:econwp:2009_05

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fishman, Arthur, 1992. "Search Technology, Staggered Price-Setting, and Price Dispersion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 287-298, March.
    2. Eric K. Clemons & Il-Horn Hann & Lorin M. Hitt, 2002. "Price Dispersion and Differentiation in Online Travel: An Empirical Investigation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(4), pages 534-549, April.
    3. Erik Brynjolfsson & Michael D. Smith, 2000. "Frictionless Commerce? A Comparison of Internet and Conventional Retailers," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(4), pages 563-585, April.
    4. Burdett, Kenneth & Coles, Melvyn G., 1997. "Steady State Price Distributions in a Noisy Search Equilibrium," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 1-32, January.
    5. Carlson, John A & McAfee, R Preston, 1983. "Discrete Equilibrium Price Dispersion," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 480-493, June.
    6. Hauser, John R & Wernerfelt, Birger, 1990. " An Evaluation Cost Model of Consideration Sets," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(4), pages 393-408, March.
    7. Kelvin J. Lancaster, 1966. "A New Approach to Consumer Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74, pages 132-132.
    8. Bauer, Hans H. & Falk, Tomas & Hammerschmidt, Maik, 2006. "eTransQual: A transaction process-based approach for capturing service quality in online shopping," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 59(7), pages 866-875, July.
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    More about this item


    e-commerce; price comparison; horizontal service differentiation;

    JEL classification:

    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing
    • L81 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Retail and Wholesale Trade; e-Commerce
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance

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