Developing effective presentation strategies for online retailers Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/fn1073184

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  • The purpose of the study was to investigate practical guidelines based on empirical evidence for effective website design, including both home page and product pages. This research consists of two consecutive empirical studies. Study 1 was one factor (home page design: image- vs. text-oriented home page) between-subjects design with two moderators: brand familiarity and centrality of visual product aesthetics (CVPA) and examined (1) effects of home page design on consumer responses, (2) effects of home page design on consumer responses as a function of individual differences, such as brand familiarity and CVPA. The design of the study 2 was a 2 (visual information: product image with a concrete background vs. product image with a solid white background) x 2 (verbal information: presence vs. absence of concrete descriptions) between-subjects factorial design. Study 2 examined (1) effects of imagery-evoking product presentation on mental imagery, (2) to examine how individual difference in terms of style of processing (SOP) affects the way product presentation influences mental imagery, and (3) to assess how mental imagery influences other consumer responses. Online experiment was conducted using mock apparel websites for both studies. The findings from study 1 revealed: (1) an image-oriented home page design was more effective in enhancing visual fluency and perceived aesthetics of a home page; (2) people in both high and low CVPA groups preferred an image-oriented home page to a text-oriented home page. The findings from study 2 revealed: (1) effectiveness of visual information in apparel websites depends on the presence of concrete and relevant background of a product image in terms of its ability to evoke elaborate mental imagery; (2) interaction effects of visual information by verbal information were significantly different between visualizers and verbalizers. The findings of both studies provide theoretical and practical implications: (1) the results provide theoretical insight to understand the effects of website design on consumer responses from the perspective of the Stimulus-Organism-Response model and dual coding theory; and (2) the empirical evidence of the effectiveness of image-oriented home page and the effects of imagery-evoking product presentation on consumer responses provides valuable marketing strategies for apparel online retailers.
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