B2C Dissertation

41 Pages   |   7,475 Words

To Analyse how Businesses in the B2C E-commerce Market can Achieve Customer Satisfaction with Enhanced Emphasis on the UK Market
Abstract

The research study aimed to analyse how businesses in the B2C E-commerce market can achieve customer satisfaction with enhanced emphasis on the UK market. This research will help to explore the dynamics of the E-commerce market. Extensive literature was explored, and five variables (system use, privacy & security, appearance, information content, product services, and appearance) were taken as the key factors. Customer satisfaction was taken as the dependent variables. The deductive approach combined with a quantitative approach that was executed through a self-administrative questionnaire was used. In order to narrow down the scope of the research, a case study of Amazon.com was taken as it one of the oldest company in the B2C online retail market that has been operational since the year 1994. Despite the fact that it penetrated late into the British market, it still holds a major chunk of sales. Correlation test and regression analysis were done to meet the aim of the study. It was found through regression analysis that only three variables are significantly related to customer satisfaction. System use, privacy& security, and appearance were the three variables that were related. In conclusion, all research objectives were met, and all research questions were answered.
 
Table of Contents
Abstract I
List of Tables. V
List of Figures. VI
1.0 Introduction. 1
1.1 Research Background. 1
1.2 Research Context 1
1.3 Research Questions. 2
1.4 Aims & Objectives. 2
1.5 Research Outline. 2
2.0 Literature Review.. 3
2.1 Appearance. 5
2.2 System Use. 5
2.3 Information Content 6
2.4 Product & Service Support 6
2.5 Privacy & Security. 7
3.0 Methodology. 8
3.1 Research Philosophy. 8
3.2 Research Approach. 8
3.3 Research Framework. 8
3.3.1 Research Hypothesis. 9
3.4 Research Instrument 10
3.5 Research Sample. 11
3.6 Research Analysis. 11
3.7 Research Ethics & Limitations. 11
4.0 Findings & Analysis. 12
4.1 Descriptive Statistics. 12
4.2 Reliability Test 24
4.3 Hypothesis Testing. 24
4.3.1 Hypothesis One. 24
4.3.2 Hypothesis Two. 25
4.3.3 Hypothesis Three. 25
4.3.4 Hypothesis Four 26
4.3.5 Hypothesis Five. 27
4.4 Regression & Hypothesis Six. 28
4.5 Summary. 30
5.0 Conclusions. 31
References. 33
Appendix A.. 35
 

List of Tables

Table 1: Amazon website has a friendly interface. 12
Table 2: It is easy to navigate through the website. 13
Table 3: It is quite easy to place an order through amazon. 14
Table 4: Amazon system ensures smooth delivery. 15
Table 5: Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions. 16
Table 6: Information on Amazon is easy to understand. 17
Table 7: Amazon offers good service and product support 18
Table 8: My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time. 19
Table 9: I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon. 20
Table 10: Amazon ensures that my information is kept private. 21
Table 11: I would recommend Amazon to my friends. 22
Table 12: Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon. 23
Table 13: Reliability Statistics. 24
Table 14: Appearance - Customer Satisfaction. 24
Table 15: System Use - Customer Satisfaction. 25
Table 16: Information Content - Customer Satisfaction. 26
Table 17: Product & Service - Customer Satisfaction. 26
Table 18: Privacy & Security - Customer Satisfaction. 27
Table 19: Goodness of Fit 28
Table 20: Analysis of Variation. 28
Table 21: Coefficients. 29
 

List of Figures

Figure 1: Research Framework. 9
Figure 2: Amazon website has a friendly interface. 12
Figure 3: It is easy to navigate through the website. 13
Figure 4: It is quite easy to place an order through amazon. 14
Figure 5: Amazon system ensures smooth delivery. 15
Figure 6: Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions. 16
Figure 7: Information on Amazon is easy to understand. 17
Figure 8: Amazon offers good service and product support 18
Figure 9: My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time. 19
Figure 10: I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon. 20
Figure 11: Amazon ensures that my information is kept private. 21
Figure 12: I would recommend Amazon to my friends. 22
Figure 13: Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon. 23
Figure 14: Regression Summary. 30
 
 

Yes, We Can Help!

We promise to deliver high quality papers on time which will improve your grades. Get help now!

SAMPLES PLACE ORDER OUR SERVICES
Plagiarism Free Work
Best Price Guarantee
100% Money Back Guarantee
Top Quality Work

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Research Background

The fourth P of marketing, Placement, ensures that marketers’ product is available to maximum number of consumers. Companies have started to move from traditional placement channels (company à wholesaler à retailerà consumer) to a revised chain of distribution that removes wholesalers and retailers. Companies have started their retail stores, both brick-and-mortar and online retail stores. Online retail channels are gradually becoming an augmented part of the services that companies provide rather than being a value-added service. In order to keep up with the competition, more and more companies have started to use the online channel to market and sell their products (Kotler & Keller, 2008).
One of the key goals in any marketing activity (any of the 4 Ps) is to ensure that the customer is satisfied. Customer satisfaction factors are different when a consumer shops through traditional channels and when he or she shops at an online retail store as tangibility is compromised; this not only increases the perceived risk, but it also alters customer decision making process. In order to understand the reasons due which customers feel satisfied while shopping at online retail stores, this study is being conducted (Kotler, et al., 2013).
Given the importance of online retail stores, even small companies have started to operate their online retail stores. In the year 2014, consumers spent GBP 104 billion on online retail. The growth rate was noted to be 14% in the United Kingdom. Experts have claimed that it is highly unlikely that the growth rate of the online retail industry would go negative. During the year 2015, the growth rate is forecasted to be around 12% as the sales are expected to be around GBP 116 billion by the end of the year. It is crucial for companies to understand the constructs of consumer satisfaction at online retail stores (Bowdcn, 2015).

1.2 Research Context

As there are thousands on online retailers around the world, it is important to narrow it down to a limited number for polishing the scope of the research. Amazon (www.amazon.com) is one those online B2C retailers that started its operations in early 90’s. The company has a wide range of the diversified portfolio as it deals in several categories of products. The company started its operations in the United States of America, and currently it is operating in more than 160 regions.There are around 36 sub-brands of Amazon that are operating on the same business model as the parent company. Given the fact that it is one of the oldest online B2C retail markets, the customer base is huge, and the accessibility to these customers would be quite easy (Amazon, 2015).

1.3 Research Questions

  1. What are some of the main factors that drive Customer Satisfaction in the B2C E-commerce market, specifically in the online retail segment?
  2. Which examples from online retail facilities within UK can show the dynamics of B2C E-commerce market?

1.4 Aims & Objectives

The aim of this research is to analyse how businesses in the B2C E-commerce market can achieve customer satisfaction with enhanced emphasis on the UK market. This research will help to explore the dynamics of the E-commerce market.  Following are research study objectives:
  • To understand dynamics of B2C E-commerce market with the help of available literature.
  • To find out major factors influencing Customer Satisfaction in B2C E-commerce market focusing on the online retail segment.
  • To illustrate some of the examples from UK that help examine dynamics of B2C E-commerce market especially in the online retail segment.

1.5 Research Outline

The research study is divided into four sections; the first section covers secondary literature. The literature review is divided according to the variables of the research. The second part covers methodology i.e. the types of methods that will be used to conduct the research. The second last part covers findings and analysis, whereas the last part covers the conclusion (Saunders, et al., 2007). 

 

2.0 Literature Review

Acquiring consumer satisfaction is a pretty challenging task for any corporate venture. It becomes particularly important in case of B2C E-commerce sector owing to its constantly changing environment. The establishment of World Wide Web marked the introduction of the e-commerce sector. The favourable role of e-commerce is evident from the fact that various firms have employed it in their operational activities but at the same time it has raised few issues that have led to declining growth rates (Brown & Jayakody, 2008).
Recently, retaining consumers via online means has gained focus because of its eminent role in acquiring a competitive edge. If a consumer feels satisfaction towards an online retail store, he/she will be inclined to purchase from there again. As a result, the phenomena of consumer contentment and consumer retention have both gained emphasis by online as well as offline corporations. It is imperative to comprehend the determinants of customer contentment and the online mediums they choose. Kotler stated that the purchase process comprises of identification of the issue or the requirement, data search, appraisal of options available, buying intention and attitude following the purchase (Collis & Hussey, 2003).
Contentment is the product of consumer’s experience throughout the sequential steps of buying. The experience of an online buyer is limited to the information depicted by online stores since there is no physical exposure. Hence, the information and the business and product quality might affect consumer contentment as he/she goes through the stages of information search and making buying decisions. This study emphasized on recognizing and measuring the factors that play the role of precursors of online user contentment. Furthermore, it was investigated experimentally that what is the link between these factors and online customer contentment. During the process, this investigation led to the formation of information system study and the marketing norms along with the identification of measures of online customer contentment and its prerequisites (E Marketer, 2013).
The most critical element that investigators have found is that most online sellers face trouble in sustaining consumer contentment and trust because of the widespread expansion in B2C customer sector. The expansion of B2C E-commerce is evident from its market penetrance. The UK E-commerce trade market is anticipated to achieve $142.43 billion or 16% of total UK merchandise sales, by the year 2017 (E Marketer, 2013). There are a number of determinants of customer contentment elucidated by investigators. One of them includes the variety of offerings made. Customers believe that a sole e-commerce venture must offer a wide assortment of products that allow the customers more convenience rather than having to go to an actual store (Kotler, et al., 2013).
Along with these diverse assortments of products, these ventures should also offer products of superior quality or else the customer will feel dissatisfaction towards the purchased product and may quit shopping from that online forum (Nguyen, 2004). The quality of the product also affects the product price because the products with high costs are envisaged as superior in quality than the less costly ones (Pavlou & Fygenson, 2006). The layout of the website and its features are also important. Many consumers believe that poor website layout and non-appealing features can lead to consumer dissatisfaction. The layout needs to be simpler, organized and convenient to navigate or else the consumers may deviate to other competing retailers. Moreover, customers are worried about online security, payment method and website features to proceed the transaction (Lightnel & Lightner, 2003). Failure to meet these criteria can lead to declining consumer contentment.
Additionally, service quality is another determinant of consumer contentment which is measured by the extent of responsiveness and customizability of services available at the e-commerce platform. Good service quality amplifies consumer contentment and plays a role in developing customer reliability in the forum. Trust is imperative because a customer who counts on the e-commerce platform will be inclined to revisit the website and avail its services again because customers dislike shifting retailers (Brown & Jayakody, 2008). In the light of these determinants of consumer contentment, corporate ventures in the e-commerce sector of UK must recognize that future advancement will rely on their ability to fulfil customer requirements. Corporate ventures will fail to gain a foothold in the market unless they learn to combine their practices in a flawless way and deliver products that are similar in quality to those available at traditional retail stores. There must exist an equilibrium between product diversification and product quality that will provide a competitive edge to certain corporations over others.
It is a difficult job to attain consumer contentment in the e-commerce market sector. It can only result from company’s ability to recognize measurable. In this research, five primary determinants have been brought to light and are further classified into sub-factors. The detailed literature review has depicted that some of the determinants of consumer contentment include appearance, utilization of the forum, data collected, privacy and security and product and service quality.

2.1 Appearance

The corporate website is the first and foremost thing that the consumer tends to see for any e-commerce business. In this case the notion that first impression is the last impression seems applicable. If the layout and the façade of the site are not up to the mark, it instantly repels the users. Hence, the website needs to be aesthetically superior with attractive visualization. The features and icons should be neatly organized, and the site should not be messy. It is imperative to have a convenient user interface too (Alba, et al., 1997).
Nowadays, firms put in additional efforts to ensure a quality visual experience by the consumers. Various firms have employed experts of the interface and interactive layout designing so as to top the list of firm with appealing websites. Various elements can serve as a measure for website’s visual appeal including physical layout, design aesthetics, simplistic user interface, interactive features, accessible reference links and relevance of the icons. The physical layout refers to the visual design imparted to the website whereas design aesthetics refers to the quality of website model. It confirms that all the related icons are organized appropriately and will not pose a problem to the website visitor for navigating the site. Simplistic user interface deals with the visitor’s convenience and retention while exploring the site. He/she should feel welcomed, and the need to visit another page is uprooted. Hyperlinks play the role of a virtual guide for the user and make navigation of the page and related sites easy. User-tailored search options add value to the firm’s website and widen the options for its users (Cheng, et al., 2014).

2.2 System Use

This element deals with the usage of venture’s working system by the consumers. This is among the quantifiable factors of consumer contentment in the e-commerce sector. Each e-commerce venture requires a minimum array of systems in position. A smooth and hindrance free user dealing experience is dependent on these systems. The systems on the website can be further classified into a number of sub-systems. Few detectable variants that influence the system may include dealing status, convenience of dealing, intimation and check on dealings (Dabholkar, et al., 2000). In addition, the e-commerce program should have the capacity to match up the systems in position with the customary brick and mortar framework so that the consumer goes through an experience identical to the customary framework. This accounts for trial-based products, product delivery timeline, reliable and secure dealings, automated payment modes, address retention features and money back guarantee, etc.

2.3 Information Content

For any e-commerce endeavour, information is critical since it is the main channel of mediating any e-commerce dealing. Information can up or down-regulate any corporate venture. It is imperative for pulling consumers to a website and takes into account the aspects of displayed content on website, as well as its convenient navigation (Fiore & Kim, 2007). Few detectable determinants consist of the feature of order notifications via message or e-mail, reliability and application of the information displayed, clear-cut representation of product prices and feedback videos about the product usage. All these are determinants of an effective, informative website and achieving superior levels of these parameters can lead to a satisfied user experience (Dabholkar, et al., 2000).

2.4 Product & Service Support

The most significant offering that any e-commerce program can offer its customers is their service. The organizations should have the capacity to distinguish themselves from other market competitors solely on the basis of the quality of their services. The variety of products that any company introduces constitutes the particular proportion of a set of services that are made available by that company. Many investigators have concluded from their researches that service support significantly and majorly contributes towards attaining consumer contentment towards a particular firm and its offered services. As a consequence, service support can be employed as a determinant that upgrades the offerings (products and service) made by the e-commerce venture in contrast to the customary brick and mortar companies. Superior quality of consumer services should be implemented and sustained by any company because the primary emphasis of any company is eventually the satisfaction and retention of its customers for a long term (Verhoef, et al., 2009; Smith & Albaum, 2012). Service quality is a measure of any corporate venture’s capacity to effectively bridge the loopholes between consumer’s anticipation and perception about service support and the practically service delivered by the company to its user. The companies should be affiliated so as to minimizing this disparity between perceived and delivered services. Few main predictors of this matter may comprise of post-sales services, impartial help in making purchase selection and decision, complaint entertainment facility and managerial back up on the website (Pather, et al., 2006).

2.5 Privacy & Security

For any online retail venture, the security of the information submitted is of utmost importance. Security deals with the users freedom in the online channel pertaining to the data he/she chooses to share or not. E-commerce companies deal with much confidential information including name, address, bank and credit card specifics, etc. (Ngai, 1995). It should solely be in the hands of the owner to reveal only the extent of information that they want to share discretely or keep to them. The companies do not own the submitted data in any way and are not subject to any manipulation. They ought to use the available data only for processing the online dealing formalities (Pavlou & Fygenson, 2006; Pavlou, 2003). At this point, security factor gains paramount importance. The companies are required to possess a check and balance and monitoring systems in a position to guarantee the safety of submitted information about individuals. The transaction algorithms need to be encoded in order to safeguard the data from any possible theft or identity breach. There should not be any illegal breach of information or invasion of the data, the company ought to propagate a secure business environment that is free of all risks. This becomes an inevitably significant part of an effectual and viable e-commerce framework. The sub-factors for this matter are enumerated to be safeguarding of monetary data, and the protection of the information entered on the website (Anderson & Simester, 2008; Healy, et al., 2007).

 

3.0 Methodology

3.1 Research Philosophy

A research can either employ indicative approach or deductive approach. The selection of approach is mostly based on the nature of the research. Out of three main categories of the research, this research is a causal research. For casual approach, the mostly deductive approach is used. The deductive approach moves from broad to narrow spectrum. It begins with a theory and then it tests it whether it should rejected or accepted. On the other hand, inductive approach moves from narrow to broad, it gathers data and then detects a pattern in it to propose a theory. Given the nature of research, there are a lot of theories that have been discussed in the context of customer satisfaction, this research picked up few key variables and put them to a test in order to check its validity and reliability. So, this research study uses deductive approach (Saunders, et al., 2007; Smith & Albaum, 2012).

3.2 Research Approach

The research study uses the quantitative approach. The quantitative approach allows researchers to collect a large amount of data in a short period of time. Quantitative information is dependable and objective and can be utilized over and again, as applicable to the examination. It may oblige stringent principles and arrangement to be taken after. As it is objective, it doesn't have much space for examining and hence may be restricted. It requires a measurable investigation that may require extravagant assets to be utilized. Notwithstanding, respondents may be more open to giving this kind of data as it is clear and regularly speedy. Because of its favourable circumstances, this examination utilizes quantitative methodology (Saunders, et al., 2007).

3.3 Research Framework

Based on the literature review, the research study proposes a framework in which five independent variables have been taken and one dependent variable has been taken. Five independent variables are:
  1. Appearance
  2. System Use
  3. Information Content
  4. Product & Service Support
  5. Privacy & Security
For the dependent variable, customer satisfaction is taken. The variables linkage is depicted in the following pictorial form:

Figure 1: Research Framework
The research study checks the individual relationship of the independent variables with the dependent variable. Moreover, it combines all the independent variables to see which variable has the highest significance or impact on the dependent variables. Based on the research framework, six hypothesis have been proposed.

3.3.1 Research Hypothesis

3.3.1.1 Hypothesis One

H0: Appearance is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Appearance is not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.3.1.2 Hypothesis Two

H0: System Use is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: System Use is not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.3.1.3 Hypothesis Three

H0: Information content is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Information content is not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.3.1.4 Hypothesis Four

H0: Product & service is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Product & service is not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.3.1.5 Hypothesis Five

H0: Privacy & Security is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Privacy & Security is not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.3.1.6 Hypothesis Six

H0: Appearance, System Use, Information Content, Product & Service Support, and Privacy & Security are positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Appearance, System Use, Information Content, Product & Service Support, and Privacy & Security are not positively related to customer satisfaction.

3.4 Research Instrument

Interviews are an information gathering instrument for subjective exploration. It helps in addition of definite data and can likewise give helpful non-verbal signs. Meetings may be tedious and lavish as it is hard to persuade respondents and is additionally extravagant. Surveys, then again, are much less expensive and are advantageous for both the analyst and the respondent. They frequently give decisions to respondents to browse and are consequently a fast technique for information gathering. It is likewise less expensive and gives quantitative, target information that can be arranged for measurable investigation. Questionnaire for this study will be divided into six segments; each segment will cover each variable. Two statement per variable will be given on which respondents would have to give response on 5 point LIKERT scale of strongly disagree to strongly agree (Saunders, et al., 2007; Smith & Albaum, 2012).

3.5 Research Sample

The questionnaire would be distributed to users of Amazon.com. These users were targeted through surveymonkey.com. The websites help in getting information from the exact target market; in this case, Amazon users. Sample size of 60 is taken for this research study by keeping in mind 95% confidence interval with minimum standard error (Battaglia, 2011).

3.6 Research Analysis

For research analysis, descriptive statistics is used to report the findings of the questionnaire. After that, Cronbach’s Alpha is calculated to check the reliability of the data and instrument. In the last section, hypothesis testing and regression is done (Saunders, et al., 2007).

3.7 Research Ethics & Limitations

No personal information of users was gathered. They were informed about the objective of the research and were assured that the research will not be used for any commercial purposes. There are numerous factors that contribute towards customer satisfaction. The spectrum of variables can be expanded in the future research by dissecting each independent variable into sub-variables.

 

4.0 Findings & Analysis

4.1 Descriptive Statistics

Following tables and graphs have been generated through SPSS:
Table 1: Amazon website has a friendly interface
Amazon website has a friendly interface
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 6 10 10
Disagree 10 16.7 26.7
Neutral 23 38.3 65
Agree 7 11.7 76.7
Strongly Agree 14 23.3 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 2: Amazon website has a friendly interface
26.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.

 
Table 2: It is easy to navigate through the website
It is easy to navigate through the website
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 11 18.3 18.3
Disagree 9 15 33.3
Neutral 21 35 68.3
Agree 10 16.7 85
Strongly Agree 9 15 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 3: It is easy to navigate through the website
 
33.3% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.

 
Table 3: It is quite easy to place an order through Amazon
It is quite easy to place an order through Amazon
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 15 25 25
Disagree 8 13.3 38.3
Neutral 16 26.7 65
Agree 11 18.3 83.3
Strongly Agree 10 16.7 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 4: It is quite easy to place an order through Amazon
 
38.3% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.

 
Table 4: Amazon system ensures smooth delivery
Amazon system ensures smooth delivery
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 7 11.7 11.7
Disagree 12 20 31.7
Neutral 18 30 61.7
Agree 11 18.3 80
Strongly Agree 12 20 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 5: Amazon system ensures smooth delivery
 
31.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.

 
Table 5: Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions
Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 5 8.3 8.3
Disagree 7 11.7 20
Neutral 26 43.3 63.3
Agree 10 16.7 80
Strongly Agree 12 20 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 6: Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions
20% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

 
Table 6: Information on Amazon is easy to understand
Information on Amazon is easy to understand
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 9 15 15
Disagree 13 21.7 36.7
Neutral 21 35 71.7
Agree 7 11.7 83.3
Strongly Agree 10 16.7 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 7: Information on Amazon is easy to understand
 
36.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

 
Table 7: Amazon offers good service and product support
Amazon offers good service and product support
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 6 10 10
Disagree 11 18.3 28.3
Neutral 22 36.7 65
Agree 8 13.3 78.3
Strongly Agree 13 21.7 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 8: Amazon offers good service and product support
 
28.3% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 
 

 
Table 8: My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time
My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 13 21.7 21.7
Disagree 11 18.3 40
Neutral 13 21.7 61.7
Agree 12 20 81.7
Strongly Agree 11 18.3 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 9: My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time
 
40% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

 
Table 9: I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon
I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 14 23.3 23.3
Disagree 8 13.3 36.7
Neutral 18 30 66.7
Agree 10 16.7 83.3
Strongly Agree 10 16.7 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 10: I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon
 
36.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

 
Table 10: Amazon ensures that my information is kept private
Amazon ensures that my information is kept private
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 9 15 15
Disagree 10 16.7 31.7
Neutral 21 35 66.7
Agree 7 11.7 78.3
Strongly Agree 13 21.7 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 11: Amazon ensures that my information is kept private
 
31.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

Table 11: I would recommend Amazon to my friends
I would recommend Amazon to my friends
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 11 18.3 18.3
Disagree 11 18.3 36.7
Neutral 18 30 66.7
Agree 9 15 81.7
Strongly Agree 11 18.3 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 12: I would recommend Amazon to my friends
 
36.7% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 

 
Table 12: Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon
Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon
  Frequency Percent Cumulative Percent
Strongly Disagree 8 13.3 13.3
Disagree 12 20 33.3
Neutral 21 35 68.3
Agree 8 13.3 81.7
Strongly Agree 11 18.3 100
Total 60 100  
 

Figure 13: Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon
 
33.3% respondents disagreed with the statement, whereas the rest were either neutral or agreed with the statement.
 
 

4.2 Reliability Test

For reliability test, Cronbach Alpha is calculated through SPSS. Following results were generated:
Table 13: Reliability Statistics
Reliability Statistics
Cronbach's Alpha N of Items
.926 12
In social science, Cronbach’s Alpha greater than 0.7 is deemed acceptable. In the case of this research study, Cronbach’s alpha is calculated to be 0.926; the closer this value to 1, the better. These statistics reveals that the data is internally consistent with each other, and if the same instrument is used elsewhere, it would measure what it is supposed to measure (Saunders, et al., 2007).

4.3 Hypothesis Testing

4.3.1 Hypothesis One

H0: Appearance is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Appearance is not positively related to customer satisfaction.
For the above hypothesis, following results were generated:
Table 14: Appearance - Customer Satisfaction
Correlations
  Appearance Customer_Satisfaction
Appearance Pearson Correlation 1 .669**
Sig. (2-tailed)   .000
N 60 60
Customer_Satisfaction Pearson Correlation .669** 1
Sig. (2-tailed) .000  
N 60 60
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
 
It was noted that the appearance of the website was directly related to customer satisfaction. Pearson Correlation was found to be 0.669, which shows a strong relation between the two variables. The p-value suggests that there is a strong relationship between the appearance of a website and customer satisfaction level. The positive sign of Pearson Correlation reveals that the nature of the relationship is positive. Hence, the hypothesis is accepted (Brown & Jayakody, 2008; Dabholkar, et al., 2000).

4.3.2 Hypothesis Two

H0: System Use is positively related to customer satisfaction
HA: System Use is not positively related to customer satisfaction
For the above hypothesis, following results were generated via SPSS:
Table 15: System Use - Customer Satisfaction
Correlations
  Customer_Satisfaction System_Use
Customer_Satisfaction Pearson Correlation 1 .744**
Sig. (2-tailed)   .000
N 60 60
System_Use Pearson Correlation .744** 1
Sig. (2-tailed) .000  
N 60 60
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
 
The hypothesis was tested using Pearson Correlation. Pearson statistics was calculated to be 0.774; this shows a very strong relationship between the two variables. Moreover, the p-value of 0.000 signifies a statistically significant relationship. Pearson value closer to 1 shows a very strong relationship. So, it is proved that smooth system use ensures customer satisfaction. Hence, the hypothesis is accepted(Pavlou & Fygenson, 2006; Lightnel & Lightner, 2003).

4.3.3 Hypothesis Three

H0: Information content is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Information content is not positively related to customer satisfaction.
 
 
 
Following table was generated through SPSS:
Table 16: Information Content - Customer Satisfaction
Correlations
  Customer_Satisfaction Information_Content
Customer_Satisfaction Pearson Correlation 1 .612**
Sig. (2-tailed)   .000
N 60 60
Information_Content Pearson Correlation .612** 1
Sig. (2-tailed) .000  
N 60 60
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
 
Pearson correlation of 0.612 shows a moderate level of relationship between the two variables. The p-value shows that the relationship is statistically significant. The positive sign of Pearson correlation shows a positive relationship. As the information, content improves by one unit, customer satisfaction increases by 0.612 units. It can be asserted that the hypothesis is true as there is a relationship between the two variables(Cheng, et al., 2014; Kotler & Keller, 2008).

4.3.4 Hypothesis Four

H0: Product & service is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Product & service is not positively related to customer satisfaction.
Following data was generated through SPSS:
Table 17: Product & Service - Customer Satisfaction
Correlations
  Customer_Satisfaction Product_Service_Support
Customer_Satisfaction Pearson Correlation 1 .660**
Sig. (2-tailed)   .000
N 60 60
Product_Service_Support Pearson Correlation .660** 1
Sig. (2-tailed) .000  
N 60 60
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
 
It was noted that product and service are directly related to customer satisfaction. Pearson Correlation was found to be 0.660, which shows a strong relation between the two variables. The p-value suggests that there is a strong relationship between product & service and customer satisfaction level. The positive sign of Pearson Correlation reveals that the nature of relationship is positive. Hence, the hypothesis is accepted(Pather, et al., 2006).

4.3.5 Hypothesis Five

H0: Privacy & Security is positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Privacy & Security is not positively related to customer satisfaction.
Table 18: Privacy & Security - Customer Satisfaction
Correlations
  Customer_Satisfaction Privacy_Security
Customer_Satisfaction Pearson Correlation 1 .745**
Sig. (2-tailed)   .000
N 60 60
Privacy_Security Pearson Correlation .745** 1
Sig. (2-tailed) .000  
N 60 60
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
 
The hypothesis was tested using Pearson Correlation. Pearson statistics was calculated to be 0.745; this shows a very strong relationship between the two variables. Moreover, the p-value of 0.000 signifies a statistically significant relationship. Pearson value closer to 1 shows a very strong relationship. So, it is proved that high privacy and security assurance ensures customer satisfaction. Hence, the hypothesis is accepted (Pavlou, 2003).
 

4.4 Regression & Hypothesis Six

H0: Appearance, System Use, Information Content, Product & Service Support, and Privacy & Security are positively related to customer satisfaction.
HA: Appearance, System Use, Information Content, Product & Service Support, and Privacy & Security are not positively related to customer satisfaction.
Following tables were generated through SPSS:
Table 19: Goodness of Fit
Model Summary
Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. Error of the Estimate
1 .828a .686 .657 .67815
a. Predictors: (Constant), Privacy_Security, Appearance, Information_Content, System_Use, Product_Service_Support
 
Adjusted R-Square of 0.657 reveals that Goodness of Fit of the model. The variables included in the model explain 65.7% variations. This shows that there are other variables as well that needs to be taken into account. However, the majority of the variation is explained by this model i.e. almost 2/3rd of the variation is explained by appearance, privacy security, information content, system use, and product support.
Table 20: Analysis of Variation
ANOVAa
Model Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
1 Regression 54.166 5 10.833 23.556 .000b
Residual 24.834 54 .460    
Total 79.000 59      
a. Dependent Variable: Customer_Satisfaction
b. Predictors: (Constant), Privacy_Security, Appearance, Information_Content, System_Use, Product_Service_Support
 
The Regression model, which includes five variables explain 54.166 of variation in the model out of 79. Only 24.834 is unexplained by this model, out of 79, which is a small chunk. The F-value shows that the relationship between the variables is linear in nature as the p-value of F-Statistics is 0.00 (Collis & Hussey, 2003).
Table 21: Coefficients
Coefficientsa
Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig.
B Std. Error Beta
1 (Constant) .245 .301   .812 .420
Appearance .225 .111 .220 2.036 .047
System_Use .347 .129 .359 2.694 .009
Information_Content -.026 .138 -.023 -.191 .849
Product_Service_Support .009 .139 .008 .062 .951
Privacy_Security .358 .111 .377 3.228 .002
a. Dependent Variable: Customer_Satisfaction
 
Individually, the variable are directly related to customer satisfaction, but in a regression model where effects of all variables in combined and checked on one single variable, few variables lose their significance. There were three variables that were found significant; appearance, system use, and privacy & security. The p-value for appearance was 0.047, which shows that the relationship hold true at 95% confidence level. Secondly, system use was significant at p-value of 0.009, which shows that the relationship is significant at 99% confident level. For privacy & security, p-value was found to be 0.002, which means that the hypothesis holds true at 99% confident interval.
Out of three proven variables, privacy at security has the strongest impact with a beta of 0.358. At the second number, system use has the strongest impact with beta of 0.347 and lastly, appearance has the minimum level of impact at 0.225 (Collis & Hussey, 2003; Healy, et al., 2007; Brown & Jayakody, 2008).

4.5 Summary


Figure 14: Regression Summary
Out of five variables, only 3 had a significant impact on customer satisfaction. Two were significant at 99% (***) level, whereas one was significant at 95% (**) level. 

5.0 Conclusions

The research study was initiated by keeping three objectives in account (1) to understand dynamics of B2C E-commerce market with the help of available literature, (2) to find out major factors influencing Customer Satisfaction in B2C E-commerce market focusing on the online retail segment, and (3) to illustrate some of the examples from UK that help examine dynamics of B2C E-commerce market especially in the online retail segment. For the first research objective, an extensive literature review was done, and it was observed that there are several variables that researchers have observed in a similar context. The critical review revealed that five main variables were covered by various researchers but in different studies. This research study combined these variables and linked it with customer satisfaction. System use, privacy & security, product support, appearance, and information content were the five variables. Each variable was defined and studied extensively keeping in mind its operationalization along with its dynamics in the context of customer satisfaction. Hence, it is asserted that the first objective of the research study was met.
The second objective was to find out major factors influencing Customer Satisfaction in B2C E-commerce market focusing on the online retail segment. The literature review helped in narrowing down the key factors. Five factors were put to the test. About 60 respondents who had experienced amazon.com online shopping experience were taken trough surveymonkey.com.  Deductive approach complemented with the quantitative method was employed to collect primary data. Questionnaire based on 12 items was uses. Two items for each variable were used. The data was gathered and coded in SPSS. Firstly, reliability test was conducted, and Cronbach’s alpha was found to be 0.926, which shows high consistency in the data. Secondly, individual variables were tested against customer satisfaction and all hypotheses were accepted. But, in the third phase, where regression was used, it was noted that out of five variables only three were significant; system use, appearance and privacy and security. Privacy and security had the highest impact, at the second number, system use was the strongest variable, and lastly, the appearance was the least significant variable among three of them. So, it can be claimed that the second objective of the study was also met.
The third objective was to illustrate some of the examples from UK that help examine dynamics of B2C E-commerce market especially in the online retail segment. The research study used Amazon.com as a case study for this research or as an example to narrow down the research. Amazon example was taken because it was one of the oldest online retail stores that was involved in B2C retailing. Hence, it can be claimed that the third objective was also met.
The research proposed two research questions, (1) what are some of the main factors that drive Customer Satisfaction in the B2C E-commerce market, specifically in the online retail segment?, and (2) which examples from online retail facilities within UK can show the dynamics of B2C E-commerce market? For the first research question, the answer was linked to the second research objective. Appearance, system use, and privacy & security were the main factors that lead to high customer satisfaction. For the second research question, Amazon explains the dynamics of the UK market as it is one of the oldest online retail stores that deal in B2C business.
 

References

Alba, J., Lynch, J. & Weitz, B., 1997. Interactive home shopping: Consumer, Retailer and Manufacturer Incentives to Participate in Electronic Marketplaces. Journal of Marketing, 61(3), pp. 38-53.
Amazon, 2015. Investor Relations. [Online]
Available at: http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=97664&p=irol-irhome
[Accessed 29 March 2015].
Anderson, E. & Simester, D., 2008. Dynamics of Retail Advertising: Evidence from a Field Experiment. Economic Inquiry, 20(2), pp. 253-270.
Battaglia, M. P., 2011. Nonprobability Sampling. Encyclopedia of Survey Research Methods, 8 November.pp. 523-526.
Bowdcn, J., 2015. UK online retail sales exceed £100bn for first time in 2014. [Online]
Available at: http://www.retail-week.com/multichannel/online-retail/uk-online-retail-sales-exceed-100bn-for-first-time-in-2014/5068051.article
[Accessed 29 March 2015].
Brown, I. & Jayakody, R., 2008. B2C e-Commerce Success: a Test and Validation of a Revised Conceptual Model. Electronic Journal Information Systems Evaluation, 11(3), pp. 167-184.
Cheng, J. M.-S. et al., 2014. Do extrinsic cues affect purchase risk at international e-tailers: The mediating effect of perceived e-tailer service quality. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, pp. 420-428.
Collis, J. & Hussey, R., 2003. Business Research: A Practical Guide for Undergraduate and Postgraduate Students. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.
Dabholkar, P., Thorpe, D. & Rentz, J., 2000. A measure of service quality for retail stores. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, pp. 3-16.
E Marketer, 2013. Retail Drives UK B2C Ecommerce Sales Higher. [Online]
Available at: http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Retail-Drives-UK-B2C-Ecommerce-Sales-Higher/1010106
[Accessed 10 December 2014].
Fiore, A. & Kim, J., 2007. An integrative framework capturing experiential and utilitarian shopping experience. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 35(1), pp. 421-442.
Healy, M., Beverland, M., Oppewal, H. & Sands, S., 2007. Understanding retail experiences—The case for ethnography. International Journal of Market Research, 49(1), pp. 751-779.
Kotler, P. & Keller, K., 2008. (2008), Marketing Management. 13th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Kotler, P. R., Armstrong, G. & Cunningham, P. H., 2013. Principles of Marketing. 6th ed. s.l.:Pearson Education.
Lightnel, N. J. & Lightner, J., 2003. What Users Want in E-commerce Design: Effects of Age, Education and Income. Ergonomic, 46(1), pp. 153-168.
Ngai, A., 1995. A Safety Net at What Cost?. South China Morning Post, 12 Feburary.
Nguyen, H. T., 2004. Factors Affecting Customer Satisfaction and Trust in an E-commerce Setting: A Case Study of Muachang in Vietnam. Graduate School of Business Journal, pp. 43-52.
Pather, S., Remenyi, D. & Harpe, A. d. l., 2006. Evaluating e-Commerce Success – A Case Study. The Electronic Journal of Information Systems Evaluation, 9(1), pp. 15-26.
Pavlou, 2003. Consumer acceptance of electronic commerce: Integrating trust and risk with the technology acceptance model. International Journal of Eelctronic Commerce, pp. 69-103.
Pavlou, P. & Fygenson, M., 2006. Understanding and Predicting Electronic Commerce Adoption: An Extension of the Theory of Planned Behavior. MIS Quarterly, 30(1), pp. 115-143.
Saunders, M., Lewis, P. & Thornhill, A., 2007. Research Methods for Business Students. 4th ed. Harlow: Prentice Hall Financial Times.
Smith, S. M. & Albaum, G. S., 2012. Basic Marketing Research. 1st Edition ed. Utah: Qualtrics.
Verhoef, P. C. et al., 2009. Customer experience creation: determinants, dynamics and management strategies. Journal of Retailing, pp. 31-41.
 

Appendix A

Questionnaire

The questionnaire is being distributed to check satisfaction level of customers in context of online retail experience. Your information will be used for academic purposes only. Please tick in relevant boxes:
  Strongly Agree Agree Neutral Disagree Strongly Disagree
Appearance  
Amazon website has a friendly interface          
It is easy to navigate through the website          
System Use  
It is quite easy to place an order through Amazon          
Amazon system ensures smooth delivery          
Information Content  
Information on Amazon is sufficient for me to make decisions          
Information on Amazon is easy to understand          
Product and Service Support  
Amazon offers good service and product support          
My complaints and queries are attended within reasonable time          
Privacy and Security  
I feel safe while making a purchase through Amazon          
Amazon ensures that my information is kept private          
Customer Satisfaction  
I would recommend Amazon to my friends          
Overall, I am satisfied with Amazon          
 
Thank you!

Download Full Answer

Order Now