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Smartphone uses in brick-and-mortar retail stores: Gratifications as antecedents of consumer's state anxiety and purchase intention

Smartphone uses in brick-and-mortar retail stores: Gratifications as antecedents of consumer's state anxiety and purchase intention
Smartphone uses in brick-and-mortar retail stores: Gratifications as antecedents of consumer's state anxiety and purchase intention
The purpose of this research thesis is to explore the distinctive smartphone uses and a consumer’s expected gratifications during shopping journeys in brick-and-mortar retail stores in the United Kingdom. Also, it investigates whether and how smartphone’s uses and gratifications reduce consumer’s state anxiety and subsequently influence in-store purchase intention.

A two-step mixed-method research approach is followed. First, 43 individuals took part in a qualitative study in which open-ended interviews were conducted in shopping centres and high streets of two southern cities in the United Kingdom. After identifying the emerging smartphone uses and distinctive gratification goals, a quantitative study was followed to examine the correlational relationships between the constructs. Three hundred and forty-nine self-administrated valid surveys were collected from consumers shopping for apparel products in high streets and town centres of selected cities. By performing factor analysis, structural equation modelling and mediation analysis, the research questions were answered.

The thesis empirically pinpoints that in-store consumers are smartphone-dependent and a range of gratifications are achieved from using smartphones during shopping journeys, further categorised as utilitarian, hedonic and social dimensions. Due to distinct smartphone uses and gratifications, consumers are seen contacting their acquaintances and checking online product reviews to obtain second opinions, rather than consulting store assistants for advice prior to any purchases. Meanwhile, apprehensive consumers pursue a more assured and confident shopping experience to make optimal decisions. Therefore, the quantitative results support that smartphone’s utilitarian and hedonic gratifications help reduce consumer’s state anxiety, while social gratifications do not impact the anxiety. More importantly, consumer’s state anxiety is revealed to decrease instore purchase intention. Consequently, in terms of managerial implications, both shopping centres and omni-channel retailers should encourage in-store smartphone uses, accommodating consumers’ needs and enhancing communication performance.
University of Southampton
Lyu, Jing
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Lyu, Jing
b0022046-ae54-4b5f-97f4-c03539340dcb
Krasonikolakis, Ioannis
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Chen, Cheng
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Lyu, Jing (2020) Smartphone uses in brick-and-mortar retail stores: Gratifications as antecedents of consumer's state anxiety and purchase intention. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 296pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

The purpose of this research thesis is to explore the distinctive smartphone uses and a consumer’s expected gratifications during shopping journeys in brick-and-mortar retail stores in the United Kingdom. Also, it investigates whether and how smartphone’s uses and gratifications reduce consumer’s state anxiety and subsequently influence in-store purchase intention.

A two-step mixed-method research approach is followed. First, 43 individuals took part in a qualitative study in which open-ended interviews were conducted in shopping centres and high streets of two southern cities in the United Kingdom. After identifying the emerging smartphone uses and distinctive gratification goals, a quantitative study was followed to examine the correlational relationships between the constructs. Three hundred and forty-nine self-administrated valid surveys were collected from consumers shopping for apparel products in high streets and town centres of selected cities. By performing factor analysis, structural equation modelling and mediation analysis, the research questions were answered.

The thesis empirically pinpoints that in-store consumers are smartphone-dependent and a range of gratifications are achieved from using smartphones during shopping journeys, further categorised as utilitarian, hedonic and social dimensions. Due to distinct smartphone uses and gratifications, consumers are seen contacting their acquaintances and checking online product reviews to obtain second opinions, rather than consulting store assistants for advice prior to any purchases. Meanwhile, apprehensive consumers pursue a more assured and confident shopping experience to make optimal decisions. Therefore, the quantitative results support that smartphone’s utilitarian and hedonic gratifications help reduce consumer’s state anxiety, while social gratifications do not impact the anxiety. More importantly, consumer’s state anxiety is revealed to decrease instore purchase intention. Consequently, in terms of managerial implications, both shopping centres and omni-channel retailers should encourage in-store smartphone uses, accommodating consumers’ needs and enhancing communication performance.

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Published date: October 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 447651
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/447651
PURE UUID: 0dc83e7e-4e5d-42e3-9acf-826efb672107

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Date deposited: 17 Mar 2021 17:39
Last modified: 13 Dec 2021 06:33

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Contributors

Author: Jing Lyu
Thesis advisor: Ioannis Krasonikolakis
Thesis advisor: Cheng Chen

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