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Title: Electronic word-of-mouth : antecedents of reading customer reviews in online opinion platforms : a case from the UK market
Author: Khammash, Marwan
ISNI:       0000 0001 3598 1708
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2008
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The Internet facilitates access to online product reviews and comments written by consumers. These reviews and comments are available to a large number of other customers and consequently, it can be predicted that these have a considerable impact on the success of goods and services. Therefore it is essential for businesses to understand the rationale of these online articulations. This thesis describes an elaborate research project, conducted to investigate and to derive motives and antecedents of the reading behaviour of consumer reviews in online opinion platforms. The thesis was carried out in two sequential phases of qualitative and quantitative methods. The first phase (N==25) employed asynchronous online interview method, synchronous online interview method and participant validity checks, all of which explored and investigated the motives. Results from the first phase showed four different types of motives that drive customers to read online reviews: Decision-illvolvement, Product-involvement, Social-involvement and Economic-involvement motives. The outcomes also demonstrated four different new types of motives: Self-involvement motives, Consumer empowerment motives, New social-involvement motives and Site-administration motives. Several related themes were also investigated, such as the preference for reading or writing and the reasons for choosing one over the other. The second phase (N==lOlO) tested the relevance of the online reading motives and their influence on consumer buying and communication behaviour in a large-scale quantitative questionnaire. The thesis concluded a necessity for opinion portal providers and commercial providers of consumer goods and services to understand the complex relationship that links motives of the online reading behaviour to the various consumer behavioural constructs. The main managerial implication is to develop strategies that allow organisations to benefit effectively from such online opinions. Further research ought to draw on a variety of research methods to create a clearer picture of online reading behaviour, in particular considering that this is an emerging area of research. Future studies could also investigate the antecedents of online writing behaviour to provide a better understanding of the full equation of eWOM.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available