The Impact of Website Quality on Impulse Buying Behaviour in Social Commerce in the Context of COVID-19 Pandemic: Evidence from an Empirical Study in Shanghai

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Liu Renming , Dr. Mooi Wah Kian


Revolutionary advances in e-commerce have given rise to a media-based shopping pattern known as social commerce (s-commerce). S-commerce leverages the social and commerce ecosystem to encourage shoppers to communicate and collaborate with others on media platforms to help sell goods or services. Although s-commerce is now morphing into an epidemic shopping channel, less literature has been devoted to examining the impact of s-commerce websites quality on consumers’ impulse buying behaviour in the COVID-19 era. Drawing on cue utilization theory and WebQual approach, this paper aims to investigate the impact of external factors of website quality on impulse buying behaviour in s-commerce. A purposive sampling strategy was employed to collect empirical data from 282 s-commerce consumers in Shanghai via a questionnaire survey. Through the SPSS and AMOS analysis, we discovered that service interactivity, website usability and information quality all positively influence consumers' urge to buy impulsively and, in turn, impulse purchases. Based on our results, we recommend that s-commerce marketers should consider the externality dimension of site quality as it has a significant impact on motivating buyers to make impulse purchases. This study has contributed to the public's understanding of the theoretical relationship between website quality and impulse purchases in COVID-19.

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