Individual Assignment:Online retailing, website design, and positive consumer behavior
Due:Apr.20, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. (Eastern) by Blackboard upload
Value:7.50% of your final grade
ExpectedLength:3-4 double-spaced pages, 12 pt. font.
Online retailing is attractive to consumers and an increasingly important method by which retailers distribute their products to consumers. Your basic tasks in this assignment are to investigate and report on key concepts in (online) retailing, determine the extent to which five different online retailers in different product categories (e.g., home furnishings, sporting goods, entertainment equipment, automobile accessories, etc.) are incorporating or addressing these concepts in the design of their websites, and to make design recommendations to a fictitious brick-and-mortar retailer within the home improvement category that is contemplating e-commerce as a way of raising sales and competing more effectively. Key concepts and concerns in online retailing include (but may not be limited to) trust and the retailer/website characteristics that communicate trustworthiness to online shoppers/browsers; enjoyment and the website characteristics (e.g., online atmospherics, etc.) that provide enjoyment to online shoppers/browsers; conversion and the retailer/website characteristics that facilitate high conversion performance. In your review of the five websites, it is very important that you identify (and provide screenshots) of the various ways by which you think they have been designed in order to (1) provoke particular evaluative and non-evaluative cognitions and emotional responses in online shoppers/browsers and to stimulate (2) purchase behavior as well as (3) positive word-of-mouth communication. It will be important in your recommendations that you provide advice that will allow the retailer to be an effective and credible online retailer within the home improvement category but that will also allow the retailer to stand out in meaningful ways from the competition.
To complete this assignment, it will be necessary for you to review and incorporate at least three academic research papers in your discussion; to help guide you, I would encourage you to specifically seek out research on the topics of:
Environmental psychology and (online) retailing
- (Online) retailing, atmospherics, and responses to atmospherics
- (Online) trust and the factors (e.g., retailer characteristics, website design elements, etc.) that facilitate trust in consumers
- Coordination with promotional tactics and integration with social media
- Others as appropriate
Note:Your report must not contain any spelling, grammar, or punctuation error(s). With the possible exception of any summary tables or illustrations you include with your report, this assignment is to be completed in paragraph form with full and complete sentences. Tables, illustrations, and screenshots, if applicable, may be best included in your report as appendices. It is expected that you will conduct secondary research as you work on this assignment. You must properly cite and reference all secondary information sources directly or indirectly incorporated in your analysis; in general, you must adhere to the honor code. Penalties will be imposed if you do not follow these instructions.