Shopping in Cyberspace: Adolescent Technology Acceptance Attitude with Decision-Making Styles

Shopping in Cyberspace: Adolescent Technology Acceptance Attitude with Decision-Making Styles

Han-Jen Niu (Tamkang University, Taiwan ROC)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7357-1.ch053
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Researchers have explored adolescents' online buying habits as the internet has developed and teenagers' incomes have increased. In this study, that tries to understand adolescent buying behavior, and adolescent decision-making styles as input variable and online shopping behavior as output variable. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) is included as a moderating variable. A total of 1,614 adolescents aged 16 to 30 in Taiwan were participants. Correlation, regression, and covariance analyses were used. Results show a positive correlation between adolescents' consumer decision-making styles and purchasing behavior (including planned and unplanned purchases). In addition, compulsive purchases under unplanned purchases showed a positive moderating effect. Recognition of ease of use in TAM had a positive moderating effect on compulsive purchases categorized under unplanned purchases. This research examined the moderating effect of variables in TAM, verifying their effects.
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1. Introduction

The Internet Population Survey of Taiwan’s Institute for Information Industry showed that Internet users who constantly access the Internet had reached 10.67 million by December of 2009 (Institute for Information Industry, 2009). The innovation and development of information technology has driven rapid shifts in consumption patterns. A survey conducted by InsightXplorer Market Research Consultants (2009) indicated that 20.7% of the respondents using online shopping would increase their use in the future. However, 64.2% of the respondents said they would not change the extent of their use of online shopping under the current economic conditions. Clearly, the public no longer considers online shopping something strange and new.

As the Internet becomes more popular, many shopping websites are aggressively expanding their business. The Institute for Information Industry in its Industry Intelligence Survey (2009) indicated that there was an increase of 30.4% in the online shopping market in Taiwan. It is projected that the market scale might reach NTD 311.6 billion 2010. The survey of “Internet Usage in Taiwan in December 2009” showed that Internet users aged 15-19 topped the list, followed by the 25-29 age group.

The above statistics show that younger groups dominate the online shopping market (Arnett, 2002; Beaudoin and Lachance, 2006; Belk, 2003; Kamaruddin and Mokhlis, 2003; Moschis and Moore, 1979; Niu, Chiang and Tsai, 2012). Therefore, the consumption behavior of adolescents has long been investigated by marketers and scholars (Arnett, 2002; Kamaruddin and Mokhlis, 2003). The economic downturn does not seem to have greatly affected adolescents’ online shopping and online auction expenditures, which have grown. InsightXplorer Market Research Consultants (2009) found that online shopping for daily necessities reached 19.23% in January 2010, an increase of 10.78% compared with the same period the previous year.

Given the foregoing, the purpose of this study was to explore the correlation between adolescents’ consumer decision-making styles and online buying behavior. Internet communities are not only important to Internet users, but are also able to provide information concerning commodities and shopping websites for buyers. Consequently, the second motive of the study was to discuss the effect of the degree of perceived use of technology applied by shopping websites on buyers’ buying behavior.

Scholars and marketers alike have long noticed the emergence of adolescent consumers and their consumption behavior (Niu et al., 2012). Consumer decision-making styles determine and shape consumer choices, and the styles are predictable (Cankurt et al., 2013; Chang and Wu, 2012; Niu, 2013; Park and Gretzel, 2010; Zhou et al., 2010). The mental characteristics of consumers can be likened to personality traits (Sproles, 1985). The concept of consumer decision-making styles is used in this study to investigate teenagers’ experience of online shopping and to explore the effect of young consumer decision-making styles on the use of online shopping. Gutierrez (2002) argued that consumers with higher shopping frequency often exhibit planned purchase and impulsive purchase behavior. Thus, purchasing behavior may be further divided into planned and unplanned purchases for the purpose of exploring the correlation between consumer decision-making styles and purchasing behavior.

As the web technologies are developing sharply, the Internet which contributes to people with convenience has become an indispensable and essential tool in our modern lives (Niu and Chang, 2013). The strong development of e-commerce combining with the rising of online community further promotes an upsurge of online buying. The technology accepts situation of adolescent should be an important moderating effect to online buying. Further, given the importance of technology in shopping on the internet (Niu, 2013; Niu and Chang, 2013), the technology accept situation of adolescent is used in this study as a moderating variable in online buying. Finally, this study will also discuss whether adolescents’ intention to use online shopping websites affects their purchasing behavior.

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