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The Impact of User Generated Content on Consumer Decision Making: Differences for decision making styles, age, and gender
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Business Administration and Management.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Aim: The aim of this thesis is to identify the influence of user generated content (UGC) on consumer decision making depending on age, gender and the decision making style of the consumer.

Methods: This thesis is based on primary data using quantitative research design. In order to collect data an Internet-mediated questionnaire based survey was conducted with the descripto-explanatory nature of research.

Results: The sample of 250 consumers offered an insight how UGC affects consumer decision making. UGC was found as more influential source for consumers than official corporate information. Moreover, the findings show that UGC influences the majority of consumers and their decision making. Consumers can find and be interested in new goods and services in UGC; search for negative and/or positive information in UGC based on which consumers can radically decide whether to purchase or not to purchase. Negative UGC influences consumers six times more often not to purchase goods and services in contrast to positive UGC which influences consumers to purchase goods and services two times more often. UGC was found to affect consumers after their purchase. They tend to return to UGC to search for more information. Consumer decision making also varies due to consumers´ age, gender and only one consumer decision making style which was possible to test. Younger consumers trust two times more UGC than older consumers. Older consumers prefer not to purchase goods and services almost tree time less often than younger consumers. Differences were found also in gender. Male consumers incline not to purchase four times more than female consumers after finding negative UGC. According to the findings perfectionists as a consumer decision making style identified in the sample search for UGC information more often than consumers who do not have characteristics of perfectionists.

Conclusion: This thesis proved that UGC has an influence on consumer decision making and also the existence of differences based on gender, age and partly on one consumer decision making style. Thereby, the results of this thesis confirm findings of prior studies and underline the importance of awareness of UGC in the corporate world as well as the academic one. The relationship between consumer decision making should be also more researched from the consumer decision making perspective.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014.
Keyword [en]
user generated content (UGC), decision making, decision making styles
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-15808OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-15808DiVA: diva2:748866
Available from: 2014-09-22 Created: 2014-09-22 Last updated: 2014-09-22Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • chicago-author-date
  • chicago-note-bibliography
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf