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Journal of Data and Information Science  2018, Vol. 3 Issue (2): 78-104    DOI: 10.2478/jdis-2018-0010
Research Paper     
The Effects of B2C Interaction on Customer Loyalty
Xinyue Yang(), Qinjian Yuan
School of Information Management, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023, China
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Abstract  

Purpose: This research attempts to examine the relationship between B2C interaction and customer loyalty in Business-to-Customer (B2C) context from a new perspective of the interactive tool.Design/methodology/approach: The scale for B2C interactive tools is of seven dimensions: efficiency, security, fulfillment, mobility, community, cultivation, and customization. A model reflecting the influences of these attributes on customer loyalty is developed and empirically examined based on data collected from 265 B2C customers. Findings: Results reveal that the fulfillment, mobility, community, and customization of B2C interactive tools can enhance customer loyalty directly and significantly. Efficiency and security, serving as the premise for possible purchase behavior, facilitate fulfillment. In addition, cultivation promotes the formation of customization, which directly strengthens customer loyalty.Research limitations: Models considering individual-level indicators and combined with classic loyalty mechanisms in B2C context may lead to a deeper understanding of the tested effects of interaction on customer loyalty.Practical implications: To strengthen B2C interaction and further cultivate loyal customers, making interactive tools more fundamental, flexible, and personalized is critical for B2C enterprises. Originality/value: This study proposes a new perspective from interactive tools when measuring the relationship between B2C interaction and customer loyalty, and offers a useful theoretical lens and reasonable explanations for investigating customer loyalty in B2C e-commerce context.



Key wordsB2C e-commerce      Interaction      Interactive tool      Customer loyalty     
Published: 14 June 2018
Cite this article:

Xinyue Yang, Qinjian Yuan . The Effects of B2C Interaction on Customer Loyalty. Journal of Data and Information Science, 2018, 3(2): 78-104.

URL:

http://manu47.magtech.com.cn/Jwk3_jdis/10.2478/jdis-2018-0010     OR     http://manu47.magtech.com.cn/Jwk3_jdis/Y2018/V3/I2/78

Interactive tool Features
Websites The most common and well-established interactive tool, with abundant information and various functions, crucial to e-commerce survival, and success (Homsud & Chaveesuk, 2014)
Mobile applications New tools to implement business penetration and conduct mobile electronic commerce
Communities (sponsored by the enterprise) Visual places where customers can exchange information about products and service with each other, and believed to reap the benefits of both peerless customer loyalty and impressive economic returns (Hagel, 1999)
The enterprise’s blog and social media accounts Good platforms for displaying the information of enterprises and products
Instant messaging, mailbox, and service hotline Integration of the interactive features of the Internet and customer communication and common ways to provide customers with desirable information and cross-selling offers regularly
Table 1 Several common interactive tools.
Figure 1. Theoretical Model.
Measure Item Percentage
Age <20 13.2%
20-26 80.8%
>26 6.0%
Education Senior high or associate degree 5.3%
Bachelor degree 83.0%
Master degree or higher 11.7%
Average monthly B2C purchase frequency 1-3 times 63.4%
4-8 times 28.3%
>8 times 8.3%
Table 2 Descriptive Statistics.
Constructs Items Standard loading T Statistics P Value C.R. Cronbach’s α AVE
Efficiency (EF) EF1 0.864 35.822 *** 0.869 0.775 0.691
EF2 0.908 71.943 ***
EF3 0.708 11.960 ***
Security (SE) SE1 0.938 99.097 *** 0.940 0.904 0.839
SE2 0.921 75.449 ***
SE3 0.889 62.403 ***
Fulfillment (FU) FU1 0.834 29.320 *** 0.885 0.804 0.719
FU2 0.872 64.421 ***
FU3 0.837 35.979 ***
Mobility (MO) MO1 0.888 54.117 *** 0.909 0.850 0.770
MO2 0.853 28.249 ***
MO3 0.890 45.400 ***
Community (CO) CO1 0.839 30.136 *** 0.905 0.841 0.760
CO2 0.893 57.397 ***
CO3 0.881 53.777 ***
Cultivation (CUL) CUL1 0.822 24.012 *** 0.863 0.773 0.677
CUL2 0.802 21.427 ***
CUL3 0.844 37.660 ***
Customization (CUS) CUS1 0.840 42.002 *** 0.889 0.814 0.727
CUS2 0.856 35.310 ***
CUS3 0.862 39.470 ***
Customer Loyalty (CL) CL1 0.792 27.921 *** 0.864 0.802 0.561
CL2 0.722 15.925 ***
CL3 0.627 13.428 ***
CL4 0.779 25.175 ***
CL5 0.810 32.035 ***
Table 3 Construct reliability and convergent validity.
Constructs AVE CL CO CUL CUS EF FU MO SE
CL 0.626 0.791
CO 0.759 0.465 0.871
CUL 0.677 0.536 0.465 0.823
CUS 0.726 0.432 0.576 0.517 0.852
EF 0.691 0.540 0.311 0.466 0.318 0.831
FU 0.719 0.537 0.396 0.485 0.407 0.664 0.848
MO 0.770 0.510 0.286 0.445 0.276 0.608 0.617 0.877
SE 0.839 0.482 0.415 0.352 0.464 0.486 0.631 0.343 0.916
Table 4 AVE & Construct Correlations.
Figure 2. Research Model Results.^Notes. *p<0.05; **p<0.01; ***p<0.001.
Construct Measurement item Source
Efficiency
(EF)
EF1: This interactive tool is simple to use.
EF2: The instructions and descriptions about it is easy to learn.
EF3: It is easy to find what I need when using it.
Koufaris & Hampton-Sosa (2004)
Security
(SE)
SE1: I feel safe and trust of the interactive tool.
SE2: I am confident of security with it.
SE3: It has a security system for my information.
Yoo & Donthu (2001)
Zeithaml et al. (2002)
Fulfillment
(FU)
FU1: The interactive tool delivers orders when promised.
FU2: It makes accurate promises about the delivery of products.
FU3: It is truthful about its offerings.
Parasuraman et al. (2005)
Mobility
(MO)
MO1: Wherever I get access to the Internet, I can enjoy the services provided by the interactive tool.
MO2: It can be opened and used in several kinds of terminals.
MO3: I can use this interactive tool for shopping at any moment.
Clarke (2001)
Ngai & Gunasekaran (2007)
Community
(CO)
CO1: I get some nice advice and helps from the interactive tool.
CO2: I am willing to share information and experiences, and answer questions through it with other customers online.
CO3: It makes me share a common bond with other members, and we become strongly affiliated with one another.
Frank (1997)
Srinivasan et al. (2002)
Cultivation
(CUL)
CUL1: The interactive tool sends me information that is relevant to my purchases.
CUL2: It pushes some discount information increase its share of my business.
CUL3: I receive some links to relevant pages about making a purchase from it.
Srinivasan et al. (2002)
Customization
(CUS)
CUS1: The interactive tool understands my specific needs and makes personal purchase recommendations.
CUS2: It stores all my preferences and offers me extra services or information tailored to my preferences.
CUS3: It makes me feel that I am a unique customer.
Wolfinbarger & Gilly (2003)
Customer Loyalty
(CL)
CL1: It is a wise decision for me to go shopping there, using various interactive tools.
CL2: When I need to make a purchase, this B2C enterprise will be my first choice
CL3: I may not consider switching to another B2C enterprise.(Legend: CL3 were removed due to insignificant loadings)
CL4: After shopping on it, I will introduce it to others.
CL5: I would like to go back to it if I want to make next purchase.
Yoo & Donthu (2001)
 Appendix A: The Detailed Scale Items
Factor CL CO CUL CUS EF FU MO SE
CL1 0.816 0.401 0.415 0.401 0.463 0.500 0.446 0.425
CL2 0.745 0.272 0.365 0.298 0.416 0.426 0.382 0.396
CL4 0.781 0.408 0.416 0.354 0.368 0.363 0.367 0.369
CL5 0.821 0.381 0.499 0.304 0.456 0.402 0.414 0.334
CO1 0.429 0.848 0.474 0.532 0.337 0.383 0.301 0.399
CO2 0.415 0.890 0.344 0.445 0.241 0.317 0.246 0.342
CO3 0.366 0.875 0.393 0.530 0.226 0.331 0.191 0.339
CUL1 0.477 0.340 0.822 0.360 0.473 0.457 0.475 0.257
CUL2 0.429 0.264 0.802 0.315 0.381 0.331 0.426 0.135
CUL3 0.428 0.485 0.844 0.538 0.328 0.404 0.262 0.405
CUS1 0.431 0.435 0.500 0.842 0.370 0.349 0.288 0.354
CUS2 0.302 0.494 0.397 0.856 0.223 0.335 0.232 0.417
CUS3 0.350 0.555 0.407 0.860 0.192 0.354 0.171 0.427
EF1 0.510 0.289 0.432 0.331 0.864 0.597 0.530 0.448
EF2 0.490 0.246 0.380 0.240 0.908 0.623 0.545 0.420
EF3 0.318 0.245 0.353 0.217 0.708 0.405 0.435 0.336
FU1 0.510 0.309 0.470 0.277 0.606 0.836 0.636 0.426
FU2 0.430 0.329 0.326 0.372 0.572 0.872 0.446 0.635
FU3 0.425 0.371 0.442 0.388 0.508 0.835 0.489 0.540
MO1 0.475 0.215 0.372 0.223 0.586 0.564 0.889 0.313
MO2 0.412 0.249 0.399 0.188 0.485 0.491 0.851 0.284
MO3 0.452 0.290 0.403 0.311 0.523 0.566 0.891 0.304
SE1 0.415 0.336 0.289 0.457 0.433 0.577 0.285 0.937
SE2 0.403 0.395 0.303 0.425 0.395 0.566 0.260 0.921
SE3 0.505 0.408 0.373 0.395 0.504 0.589 0.394 0.889
 Appendix B: Cross-loadings
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