The impact of perceived visual complexity of mobile online shops on user's satisfaction

Stefanie Sohn, Barbara Seegebarth, Madleen Moritz

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The use of Internet-enabled mobile devices (i.e., smartphones and tablets) for shopping purposes has gained in relevance among consumers. As mobile technologies become increasingly powerful, richer modes of presentation (e.g., videos and animated pictures) are used to design mobile online shops resulting in increased visual complexity. Given the importance of fluent mobile web site processing during typically short interactive sessions and the need to bridge a gap in prior research, this article explores the effects of perceived visual complexity on consumers’ perceptions and behavior-related intentions when using mobile online shops. The findings from two empirical studies (i.e., an online survey and an experimental study) conducted among mobile device-using online shoppers illustrate that perceived visual complexity negatively influences individuals’ satisfaction with their mobile shopping experience, whereas their channel-specific satisfaction enhances their loyalty to the online retailer. Customers’ perceived psychological costs (i.e., time and effort costs as well as spatial crowding perceptions) partially mediate the relationship between visual complexity perceptions and satisfaction. As the results of the laboratory experiment show, the mediating role of perceived spatial crowding in the relationship between perceived visual complexity and satisfaction depends on the mobile device individuals use to visit an online shop. Hence, this relationship is mediated by perceptions of spatial crowding only when online shop visitors use a smartphone rather than a tablet.

TidsskriftPsychology & Marketing
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)195-214
StatusUdgivet - 1. feb. 2017
Udgivet eksterntJa


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