Online Shopping Motivation Essay Example
One of the effects of globalization is the advancement that has been realized in information technology. As a result, business organizations and firms have changed their approach to the markets. The performances of activities that direct the flow of goods and services from manufacturers to their customers have taken another course. The Internet revolution has provided a lot of information resources along with other services that were difficult to reach (Fenech & O’Cass 2001, pp. 361-381). At the click of a mouse button, people can get access to the information they want on different topics and items. The Internet has played a major role in online marketing and shopping. Shopping online is a very common trend in the contemporary society and in modern times as it runs all through the day and during the night covering all types of products and services.
Establishing the Motivation Factors to Purchase in the Online Shopping
There are quite a number of factors that have facilitated online shopping experience. Along with the access to the international market arena, it provides a flexibility level that cannot be equated to a conventional shopping approach (Sorce, Perotti & Widrick 2005, pp.122-132). The speed of doing business has also been revolutionized through online shopping. Such kind of motivations have enabled business organizations to establish the new methods of understanding the behavior of online shopping for the purposes of attracting and retaining customers. Due to this, a lot of research has been conducted concerning interactions on websites along with language, presentation, structure, accessibility, navigation, marketing and security factors. When customers are not in a position to navigate all over the website to get a product they need or not in a position to get secure transactions, they are uncertain to buy from the website or even consider repeating purchases.
Despite the fast growth realized in online shopping and the ever increasing users of the Internet facilities, the factors that have contributed to decisions of online shopping are still not fully established. The factors of brand and quality, price and product image all contributed at different levels as vital elements in the decision being taken by customers when making online shopping. Additionally, online purchasing at present does not have tangible evaluative plan like a tactile input regarded as a crucial element while assessing various products. There is a proof in research that tactile input affects the evaluation of products particularly for the ones that need a lot more tactile input (Shang, Chen & Shen 2005, pp. 401-413; Teo 2001, pp. 125–137). There is still more development needed to include tactile interaction which is as of now, in an immature state. This is believed to have a big influence in the manner in which online buyers make their decisions. Therefore, the current research will look into the factors that have motivated online shopping amongst customers in different settings.
Aim and Objectives of the Study
The aim of this study is to explore the motivational factors to purchase in the online shopping and to effectively tackle this topic of study, this research will be governed by the following objectives:
- To define online shopping and related terms.
- To discuss the concept of online shopping and customer experience.
- To discuss the benefits and challenges of online shopping.
- To describe the current marketing development through online shopping.
- To identify customers’ perceptions and motivational factors on online shopping.
Engaging buyers in doing shopping online on websites needs the factors that would prompt them to do so. Online shopping has not been fully adopted by many people and is not yet fully exploited. A lot of studies have been involved in establishing the behaviors and attitudes held by customers in the recent past pointing at the factors that influence the decisions (Barkhi & Wallace 2007, pp. 313-330; Bhatnagar, Misra and Rao 2000, pp. 98-105; Chiu, Lin & Tang, 2005, pp. 416-435; Dholakia & Uusitalo, 2002, pp. 459-469; Kim, Kim, & Park 2010, pp. 1208-1222). The factors that motivate customers to make decisions of shopping online are still not yet established. Such factors considered to be influential: Internet experience, demographics, shopping orientation, personal traits, normative beliefs, psychological perception, online experience in shopping, and shopping motivation.
Consumer behavior towards online shopping should be understood in order to establish an effective relationship between the retailer and the customer. Various concerns and values affecting purchase and search intentions of buyers and building an integrated model could help in explaining the reasons why customers buy items online. An integrated motivation model and factors of concern about online shopping has been established to test the cause and effect of the variables (Chang, Cheung & Lai 2005, pp. 543-559). The intentions of the customers to search online and purchase from such platforms have not been without reasons. The intention to search directly influences the intentions of purchase. The utilitarian value of a product does not have a major impact on the intention of search although it does have a significant influence on the intention of shopping online. Security stemming out of concern factors has a big influence on both the purchase and search intentions. However, there is no influence for privacy (Citrin, Sprott, Silverman & Stem 2000, pp. 294-300).
The popularity of online shopping has mainly been facilitated through the technology advancement and particularly through the use of Internet (Chen & Tan, 2004, pp. 74-86). Among the most common Internet activities, online shopping is one apart from emails and browsing the websites. The quick development of information and computer technologies all through consumer and business communities has led to drastic changes (Foucault & Scheufele 2002, pp. 409-423; Joines, Scherer & Scheufele 2003, pp. 90–108). Internet application for the behavior of purchasing is a significant change in the manner in which sellers and buyers interact.
Online shopping is common among young people although the trend has been growing and almost including everybody with Internet knowledge and accessibility. Online shopping has significantly increased (Chiu, Lin & Tang 2005, pp. 416-435). Additionally, it has generated a lot of interest amongst business researchers. The impact of the main motivating factors of Internet shopping on the intentions of the consumers has been a very important area of study. Others have included the concern and motivation factors towards shopping via Internet and the effects of hedonic and utilitarian online purchasing value on the intentions and preferences of consumers (Dholakia & Uusitalo 2002, pp. 459-469). The willingness of consumers to use the online shopping has been largely attributed to security and privacy based on a model that is technologically acceptable (Huang & Oppewal 2006, pp. 334-353). Therefore, the perceptions of security and privacy towards online shopping are highly important for all consumers.
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Internet usage amongst the young age groups especially those below 34 has introduced potential buyers for shopping online in many parts of the world (Sorce, Perotti & Widrick 2005, pp.122-132). The predisposition that many people belong to that specific age group makes it important to establish the intentions of buying online (Boyer and Hult 2006, p. 124-147). There has been a noteworthy potential for shopping online, however, information related to the concerns and motivation by the shoppers is not available. Explorations are being made in order to establish these concern and motivation factors to offer important information for those doing marketing via online platforms and again for further research (Kim, Kim & Park 2010, pp. 1208–1222).
Online shopping entirely defines the tendency of buying products or getting services through the Internet. There are different reasons why people go shopping. It is not only about getting the product, but also how and where to get it (Zhou, Dai & Zhang 2007, pp. 41-62). These are what are generally called motivations of shopping. The concern factors of safety and security have hindered many potential online shoppers from using their cards and personal information since they have concerns that the information could be used for malicious purposes. Privacy and security are key factors for online shoppers before they can adopt electronic commerce (e-commerce). The ability to shop online is a very significant factor of concern before consumers can engage in online shopping so the experiences with Internet and the rate of purchases are directly related to the ability to shop online.
The utilitarian motivation is task-linked, logical and pertinent to closely as to whether or not the product acquisition will be accomplished (To, Liao & Lin 2007, pp. 774–787). Based on this perception, customers have concerns about buying products in a manner that is efficient and timely to achieve their objectives and goals without irritation (Mathwick, Malhotra and Rigdon 2001, pp. 39-56). Utilitarian value is thus an overall evaluation of the functional sacrifices and benefits. The value takes place when buyers get their products with using much effort. For online shopping, utilitarian value is categorized based on selection, cost saving, convenience, the absence of sociality and customized services or products and information availability (Teo & Yu 2005, pp. 451-65). On the other side, hedonic value refers to the general evaluation of experiential sacrifices and benefits like escapism and entertainment (To, Liao & Lin 2007, pp. 774–787). Customers normally take shopping as an activity more than just being a task that needs to be accomplished (Vijayasarathy 2004, pp. 747–762). The value of hedonic shopping is seen as entertainment offered through activities of shopping. Online shopping hedonic value is thus categorized as an exploration/adventure, value, social idea, and status and having authority.
This study will use a mixed methods strategy that will involve qualitative and quantitative approaches (Axinn & Pearce 2006, pp. 23-45). In a study of this kind, it is imperative to enhance the reliability and validity of data collected. The data needed for this study will match well with a mixed methods approach that will provide an opportunity to integrate the data between the different methods. This is indeed a good way of getting credibility and reliability concerning the data sourced from the respondents. The mixed methods approaches will assist in establishing the cause and the effect of the study topic. This is a social research for the reason that it is based on issues connected to human behavior. The credibility of social research is thus increased through a mixed methods approach (Creswell 2003, pp. 11-17). Through the use of this approach, replication of data will not be realized in the process of doing research. It will also eliminate non-sampling error through the use of various sources. It will therefore be easy to get rid of redundant information which is an important step in the data collection. Additionally, this approach will make it possible to capture data which would otherwise not be done with the use of one study approach. The process of collecting data is very useful in dealing with the weaknesses that may arise through a single-approach.
This study will employ probability sampling to select the sample needed for this study from the target online population as probability sampling is the most thorough type of sampling in quantitative studies (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill 2009, pp. 43-67). This will be used for the quantitative approach. Moreover, it is important to make sure that customers shopping online are represented based on age, gender and geographical location. Therefore, stratified sampling will be used as an important aspect in attaining this.
Industrial or Commercial Research Contacts
Statistical techniques as applied in random sampling will be used to select from the participants from online social platforms like Facebook and from friends and relatives who will help in making referrals to get enough participants for the study. A total of 20 participants will be targeted in this study. This chosen sample will be given scaled interviews in the form of questionnaires that will help in collecting important data to make comparisons before conclusions are made.
Questionnaires will be structured in a way that the research questions included will elicit useful responses from the respondents. These questions will be factual, projective and based on opinion and attitude as well as easy to post and disseminate to the respondents directly (Creswell 2003, pp. 11-17). They are also easy to collect. Additionally, statistical tools will be utilized in the study process for the purposes of assessing the responses derived from the filled-in questionnaires.
Making sure that respondents are aware of what the study entails will be a crucial step in collecting data (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill 2009, pp. 43-67). Therefore, the respondents will be advised on the nature that will be taken by the study, any possible risks and the benefits realized through their participation. The targeted participants will also have a right to reject a request made to them to take part in the study before they can sign the informed consent form required. All this information will be provided through writing to the targeted respondents.
The nature of the study will not be taken lightly and therefore, matters will be kept confidential. This is believed to increase a lot more positive responses from the study and a high probability of participation by the respondents. This communication will also be made by writing to the esteemed participants. Survey forms will be coded in a numerical way and will not have any information linked to any individual participant. The forms pertinent to ethical considerations will be kept in safe place to be an evidence that the participants were not coerced into the study.
Descriptive statistics will be used to analyze the data collected As well as different mathematical and statistical tools will be applied. These tools are largely used to help in data representation, delineating how it correlates and in making informed conclusions concerning the topic. The effective data analysis will be ensured through data summarization and classification based on the inherent relationships (Creswell 2003, pp. 11-17). This way, the data will be transformed into forms that are clear like charts and graphs that will present an opportunity to make inferences, recommendations and informed conclusions.
Qualitative analysis of the data will be conducted by taking the responses and getting familiar with them. Words capturing main concepts and ideas will be highlighted and assigned codes. These codes will be used as units of analysis. Codes that match will be combined in a number of categories where they fit and hence given labels to help in establishing the definitions for the categories and the themes. These categories will be grouped into different themes which will be constantly reviewed and compared to the issues that have been highlighted: online shopping, motivational factors and marketing outcomes.
Limitations of the Study
This research seeks to gather data by the way of using a standardized instrument of survey as one of its options in the mixed method approach. In such an analysis of data collected, the focus on online shopping has its own limitations;the online shopping theme is a subject that needs interpretation. There is a chance that some participants may cover up some important aspects of online shopping and exaggerate on some issues. This could therefore amount to a limited perspective on the topic under study especially concerning the motivational factors to online shopping. Again, a lot of time will be required to analyze the large volumes of the collected data especially through the qualitative section of the study.