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Ebrahim Mazaheri

What’s the influence of your website’s personality?

The increasingly competitive landscape in online shopping has set the bar higher than ever before for e-retailers. This research investigated the relationships between website personality and two key outcomes for e-retailers, website involvement and website attitudes.

What You Need to Know

In recent years, as e-retailing has approached a more mature stage and as the competition has grown increasingly, customers have raised their expectations, too. Much like brands, websites now need to develop distinct personalities to stand out from the crowd. Several characteristics of website personality determine users’ involvement and attitude towards the website, two of the most significant factors for e-retailing success.

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What Did the Researchers Do?

Building on the research on brand personality and online shopping, Saeed Shobeiri, Ebrahim Mazaheri, and Michel Laroche developed a conceptual model of website personality. They then conducted a survey to test the model on the e-shopping experiences of North American participants. The authors assessed the effects of five website personality dimensions on website involvement and website attitude.

What Did the Researchers Find?

The researchers’ conceptual model demonstrated that website personality is composed of five main attributes: enthusiasm, genuineness, solidity, sophistication, and unpleasantness. The survey results confirmed that the characteristic of enthusiasm affects both involvement and attitude positively, whereas unpleasantness, understandably has negative effects. Moreover, genuineness leads to better attitudes towards the site, while solidity causes more involvement. Finally, sophistication was not found to have any significant impact.

How Can You Use This Research?

The results of this research are particularly useful for e-retailers and other online businesses. Successful websites, like brands, need attractive personalities, and the results of this research can help towards achieving that objective.

Want to Know More?

Contact: Ebrahim Mazaheri

Article citation: Shobeiri, S., Mazaheri, E., & Laroche, M. (2015). How Would the E-Retailer’s Website Personality Impact Customers’ Attitudes Toward the Site?. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 23(4), 388-401.

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