Fit does matter! An empirical study on product fit uncertainty in online marketplaces

Yili Hong, Paul A. Pavlou

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper examines the antecedents and consequences of product uncertainty in online marketplaces by conceptualizing the dimensions of product uncertainty - description uncertainty (identifying product characteristics), performance uncertainty (inferring product"s future performance) and fit uncertainty (matching product"s characteristics with buyer"s needs), with the focus on product fit uncertainty. It also theorizes the distinction, relationship, and effects of the three dimensions of product uncertainty. Finally, it proposes a set of IT artifacts to reduce product fit uncertainty. The hypotheses are tested with survey and website transaction data from 274 buyers in Taobao, the largest online marketplace in China. The results first demonstrate the distinction between three dimensions of product uncertainty, show that relative to description and performance uncertainty, only fit uncertainty has significant effect on price premiums, satisfaction, product returns, and repurchase intentions, and support the effects of the use of IT artifacts, such as instant messenger, product forums, and decision support tools on reducing fit uncertainty. Implications for research, theory and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationICIS 2010 Proceedings - Thirty First International Conference on Information Systems
PublisherAssociation for Information Systems
ISBN (Print)9780615418988
DOIs
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
Event31st International Conference on Information Systems, ICIS 2010 - Saint Louis, MO, United States
Duration: Dec 12 2010Dec 15 2010

Publication series

NameICIS 2010 Proceedings - Thirty First International Conference on Information Systems

Other

Other31st International Conference on Information Systems, ICIS 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySaint Louis, MO
Period12/12/1012/15/10

Keywords

  • Computer mediated communication
  • Decision support systems
  • Online marketplaces
  • Price premium
  • Product fit uncertainty
  • Product returns
  • Product uncertainty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems

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