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Maketing Essay:在线辅助工具对数码产品的在线购买行为的影响

How Online Decision Aids Affect Online Purchasing Behaviour of digital products
 
Introduction
网上购物具有很多优势。由于互联网的软件技术在过去几年有了显着增长,消费者在网上购物使用互动媒体的数量也迅速增加。由于现在在市场上有这么多不同的形式和品牌,消费者需要花费更多的时间在选择所购买的产品上,因此,选择网上种类繁多的产品,对于消费者真的很难。
Online shopping has abundant advantages. Due to internet software and technology have grown dramatically over the past several years, the number of consumers who use interactive media for online shopping has also rapidly increased. Because there are now so many different forms and brands available in the market, consumers need to spend more time on selecting which product to buy, and therefore, making decisions online with a vast range of products is really difficult for consumers. There is no doubt low price is the biggest attractor of all for consumers, but with a market of perfect information, how to look for low price is the key, and that is where online decision aids come into play. 
In the age of the internet, the consumer shopping model and the enterprises’ business model have changed progressively. As a result, consumers now have a new shopping alternative that is online shopping. Online shopping has abundant advantages. For instance, it is a 24 hour market, and there is no time or area limits. Furthermore, it enables consumers to search for particular products easily and it is more cost-saving. For the abovementioned reasons, enterprises have started to focus on e-commerce. Due to internet software and technology have grown dramatically over the past several years, the number of consumers who use interactive media for online shopping has also rapidly increased (Haubl and Trifts, 2000).
Interestingly, nowadays, consumers have a vast amount of alternative products to choose from. However, sometimes too many choices could confuse the consumers, for example, even when they just intend to purchase a common product such as headache medication. Because there are now so many different forms and brands of headache medication available in the market, consumers need to spend more time on selecting which product to buy (Murray and Haubl, 2008).
As a result, making decisions online with a vast range of products is really difficult for consumers. In contrast, in traditional stores, the shopkeeper can offer face to face service to individual consumers to assist them in determining what they need. Employees need to solve this problem in order to attract consumers to approach online shopping. Therefore, most online stores have decision aids to help consumers select products and attract them to purchase the items they are interested in (Punj and Rapp, 2003).
The same situation can be applied to buying luxuries products online, as it is hard to choose from so many brands and official sites, not to mention one luxuries brand may have thousands of products to choose from. Potential customers may have the financial power to shop, but without appropriate online help, they may turn to sites that make their life easier with better online decision aids.
 
Literature Review
The objective of this research is to examine luxurious brands’ online decision aids aiming to help when customers are shopping online. The research involves information systems study, and the literature review section is thus divided into four main categories. The first part of the literature review discusses the issue of online store. The second part describes the environment of electronic shopping. The third part explains about Interactive Consumer Decisions Aids which includes Recommendation Agent as well as Comparison Matrix. The fourth part it covers the key motivation studies of the customer behavior as well as the repeat purchase decision. 
In the age of the internet, the consumer shopping model and enterprises’ business model has changed progressively. As a result, consumers now have a new shopping alternative that is online shopping. Online shopping has abundant advantages. For instance, it is a 24 hour market, there is no time or area limits. Furthermore, it enables consumers to search for particular products easily and it is more cost-saving. For the abovementioned reasons, enterprises have started to focus on e-commerce. Over the past several years, internet software and technology has grown dramatically. The number of consumers who use interactive media for online shopping has also rapidly increased (Haubl and Trifts, 2000). 
Nowadays, customers have a vast amount of alternative products to choose from. For instance, a Wal-Mart supercenter has over 100,000 items (Yoffie, 2005), Home Depot has more than 50,000 items (Murray and Chandrasekhar, 2006), and traditional grocery shops have over 30,000 items (Schwartz, 2005). There is no need to say how much items an online store has, because e-Bay and Amazon both offer millions of products (Murray and Haubl, 2008). However, sometimes too much choice confuses the consumers, even when a customer just wants to purchase a common product such as headache medication because there are now so many different forms and brands of headache medication so the consumer needs to spend a lot of time on selecting the product (Murray and Haubl, 2008).. They need to select between the chemical composition, brand name, generic, packaging, and concentration (Murray and Haubl, 2008). 
It is worth pointing out that:
“There is a cost to processing information, and cost rises as the complexity of the decision increases” Murray and Haubl, (2008).
As a result, making decisions online with a vast range of products is really difficult for consumers. In contrast, in traditional stores, the shopkeeper can offer face to face service to individual consumers to help give the consumer what they need. Online stores need to  solve this problem in order to attract http://ukthesiss.com/Thesis_Writing/Marketing/ consumers to online shopping. Therefore, that is why most online stores have decision aids to help consumers select products and attract them into purchase the items (Punj and Rapp, 2003). 
Furthermore, in regards to the stages of the decision making process in an electronic commerce environment which are two main stages during the decision making process of the online shopping product search environment in order to make a decision (Haubl and Trifts, 2000). The first stage is screening the products, and the second stage is comparing the products’ different features and details. During these two stages that customers enable to use Interactive Consumer Decisions Aids in order to support their purchasing process as well as make purchase decisions. 
 
 
 Electronic shopping Environment
The study of Steckel et al. (2005) suggests during the internet boom of the late 1990s-early 2000s, pure internet enterprises are less common today. Web and electronic businesses are important for today’s industry drivers; meanwhile, it is applying digital technology to commercially transact between units and individuals. Before further discussion, it is important to understand what is online shopping. In Papazafeiropoulou (2010) study “electronic commerce is buying and selling over digital media.” In addition, Habib (2001) identified that electronic commerce has three digital dimensions. They are: the product (service) being sold, the process, and the delivery agent (or intermediary). Additionally, Keen and McDonald (2000) suggest that online stores are not about the aesthetics that are the processes behind the click (Keen and McDonald, 2000). It means that the capability of the online store of the effect is no need to say.
 
However, the new tendency to enterprises is using electronic commerce (electronic or online stores) as a part of business strategy to apply websites in order to enhance their traditional stores or moreover to be their primarily market channel. Accordingly, customers have to determine how to implement on the electronic shopping environment. Online stores provide customers with a vast range of alternative products and immense convenience. Unfortunately, providing the right amount of information and finding products that match the customer needs is not an easy assignment for these online stores (Pfeiffer et al., 2008). As most electronic shopping environments are featured with a dynamic flow of data, a great number of choices, and multiple decision standards, this may defeat customers (Punj and Rapp, 2003). Therefore, an online store applying the right tools can influence its survival; useful product recommender tools are progressively known by online stores as a means to sell more products. Inversely, websites that do not adapt intelligent tools will not only see bad purchase volumes but also undergo poor traffic as customers are more likely to come back to online stores adapting intelligent tools (Castagnos et. al, 2009). Furthermore and more importantly, the process of making purchase decision are represent in Haubl and Trists (2000) study there are two main stages during the making decision process of an online product search environment in order to make a decision. In the first stage, a customer identifies a number of products they want to compare known as the consideration set or the basket. Experts refer to this stage as product breaking (Mase et.al, 1999). As for the second stage, in order to make a decision, the customer will compare the features and details of these products. Experts refer to this stage as product comparison. (Castagnos et. al, 2009) In addition, Haubl et al. (2003) points out that one of the most interesting sights of the electronic shopping environment is that they make enterprises build personalized customer interfaces. It means that customer interfaces of online stores can be designed to be adjustable to particular needs, interests, and preferences of each customer at specific points in time. Such personalization can offer an individual shopper interface, dependent on what the website is able to infer, or what the website knows about specific customers.
 
 
 Interactive Consumer Decisions Aids (ICDAs)
According to Alba et al. (1997) study the tools of interactive consumer decisions aids available for implementing device interactivity in an electronic commerce environment have to provide customers with unexampled opportunities to set and compare product offerings (Alba et al. 1997, p.38). Such functions are especially valuable given that online shops cannot provide real contact with products, they do not have the opportunity to offer the consumer face to face advise with a salesperson, and may offer a vast range of products because their shelf space is virtually infinite; it is a lack of physical constraints about product display (Haubl and Trifts, 2000). 
 
A crucial issue about decision-making in the electronic environment is that it is often unable to help individuals evaluate all available choices (Beach, 1993). Therefore, a normal sorting of interactive shopping agents is depending on whether a tool is created to help a customer determine where or what to buy. These two assignments may be described as product breaking and merchant brokering (Guttman et al., 1998). The primarily two step of purchase decision making process may expand as follows: firstly the consumer screens a vast range of products and gives them an in-depth evaluation, and secondly she or he examines the latter in more depth, implements comparisons across commodity on important attributes, and makes their purchase decision (Haubl and Trifts, 2000). According to Haubl and Trifts (2000) given these two different assignments to be implemented in the purchase decision making processes, interactive tools help to consumers in the abovementioned two aspects seem especially valuable; they are primary screening of available products to decide which ones are worth evaluating further. Furthermore, in an article by Murray and Haubl (2008), interactive decision aids are a technology designed to help consumers make better purchase decisions. The role of an interactive customer decision aid will be introduced in the following order:
Clerk - help consumers to search for products.
Advisor – apply consumers’ actions to make product recommendations.
Banker – provide banking information to help consumers to finish transactions.
Tutor – help consumers to form their preferences.
 
However, this research will be focuses on the two decision aids: Recommendation Agent and Comparison Matrix, each of them are designed to support customers implementing purchase decision.
 
Recommendation Agent (RA)
The capability of recommendation agent as Haubl and Trifts once stated:
“To allow consumers to efficiently screen the (potentially very large) sets of alternatives available in an online shopping environment” (Haubl and Trifts, 2000).


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