Role of Platform, Supplier and Medium in Online Trust Formation

Role of Platform, Supplier and Medium in Online Trust Formation

You Yan (College of Economics and Management, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China), Zhao Dongmei (College of Economics and Management, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China) and Yang Weining (College of Economics and Management, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China)
DOI: 10.4018/IJBDCN.2019010104

Abstract

Research literature suggests that online trust and commitment are the core constructs in building a sustainable electronic commerce relationship. This article investigates the respective roles of the platform, supplier and medium in forming online trust, and determines whether these factors ultimately influence purchase intentions. It seeks to re-examine the trust model by McKnight and identifies how a trust model can be adapted in current business environments. A model is developed and tested by six constructs which have an impact on each other. Survey data from online platform customers (n = 386) are used to test the online trust hypotheses with structural equation modeling. As hypothesized, the results suggest that platform, supplier and medium have a positive relationship with online trust, and especially the platform has the highest positive impact. Among platform sub constructs, the web design, supplier rank and the privacy policy are crucial. After sale service, the company location and price strongly influence the supplier. For the medium sub constructs, 3rd party seals impact the medium more strongly than expert comments and consumer reviews. However, the medium has negative impact on behavioral intentions. The article identifies interesting differences between the original work by McKnight and the findings of this study, but basically concludes that the online trust theory applies to current electronic commerce market. Few studies have examined the role of platform, supplier and medium separately in forming online trust. This study divides platform and supplier into two separate constructs to meet the new market development. The modified model truly reflects the vibrant online platform environment and can provide better insight into managing the platform.
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Background And Model Development

Online Trust

Trust means highly positive expectations of other people and their behavioral intentions in psychology (Rousseau et al., 1998). For an online customer, trust is tested by the behavioral intentions of purchasing from websites, also as the willingness to be vulnerable and frequently be regarded as trusting intentions (Kaplan and Nieschwietz, 2003). Customers make purchasing decisions as a routine, which suggests that online trust is built as the base of exchanging in society (Zucker, 1986). Once two parties have confidence of reliability and integrity on each other when doing online business, online trust between those two parties has been established (Morgan and Hunt, 1994).

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