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Understanding consumers’ paths to webrooming: A complexity approach

Eugene Cheng-Xi Aw

Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 2020, vol. 53, issue C

Abstract: Webrooming (practice whereby products are researched online before making an offline purchase) has been recognized as a prevalent form of cross-channel shopping behavior. Grounded in complexity and configuration theories, this study examines how different causal conditions determine webrooming intention. Required data was obtained from a purposive sample through paper surveys, and was analyzed using fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA). The findings reveal three configurations in which different combinations of product, consumer, and channel factors may interact in different ways to explain high webrooming intention. Notably, product involvement was identified as the core condition in all configuration paths. This study enriches the theoretical foundations of webrooming behavior, and the findings yielded are expected to assist retailers in developing better-targeted strategies in dealing with this increasingly prevalent cross-channel behavior.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jretconser.2019.101991

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