When is Enough, Enough? Investigating Product Reviews and Information Overload from a Consumer Empowerment Perspective
Journal of Business Research
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This study focuses on consumers' processing of online reviews as an empowering experience. We investigate how decision support information (i.e., online reviews) can lead to information overload and decision difficulty, and ultimately affect decision satisfaction. A series of three experimental studies with subjects from a professional marketing agency examine the influence of self-determined review quantity and perceived review quality on satisfaction, as well as the mediating effects of information overload and decision difficulty. Our results show that the effect of perceived review quality on information overload is enhanced when the consumer chooses to read more reviews. Individual characteristics are also relevant; consumers' product knowledge moderates the mediating effect of decision difficulty on satisfaction. This study contributes to the literature by (1) investigating how the characteristics of decision support information affect decision process and outcome, and (2) exploring the boundary conditions wherein online reviews can empower but also overload consumers under various decision contexts.
Online reviews; Consumer empowerment; Information overload; Decision satisfaction; Review quantity and quality
Krishen, A. S.
When is Enough, Enough? Investigating Product Reviews and Information Overload from a Consumer Empowerment Perspective.
Journal of Business Research, 100