Integrating Conflicting Reviews: Attributional Hypotheses of Consumer Response to Information Uncertainty depending on Prior Brand Attitude
Proceedings of the 41st Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS 2008) (2008)
Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii
Jan. 7, 2008 to Jan. 10, 2008
This study investigates how consumers evaluate a product when they read conflicting online consumer reviews of evaluations from previous consumers. If consumers are rational, as is assumed in economics, they prefer the product with the low-variance of review-rating scores rather than the product with the high- variance of review-rating scores because the variance of review-rating scores is positively related to the perceived uncertainty of product performance. Our study finds the condition in which consumers are likely to act irrationally, and explain why consumers have irrational behavior with attribution theory. When attributional bias occurs, consumers with a favorable prior brand attitude prefer the product with high-variance reviews over the product with low-variance reviews. Whereas, if attributional bias does not exist, rational behavior about the information uncertainty is found. Our findings show the underlying mechanism for the consumers' responses to the disagreements of others' opinions and give practical implications for online sellers.
D. Park and I. Han, "Integrating Conflicting Reviews: Attributional Hypotheses of Consumer Response to Information Uncertainty depending on Prior Brand Attitude," Proceedings of the 41st Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS 2008)(HICSS), Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii, 2008, pp. 287.