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The Utilization of Web2.0 Functionalities on ECommerce Web Sites

Yong-Mi Kim1 and Suliman Hawamdeh2
1. School of Library and Information Studies, University of Oklahoma, Tulsa, USA
2. College of Information, University of North Texas, Denton, USA

Abstract—The advent of Web 2.0 has changed the way people utilize and interact with information. The dynamic and collaborative nature of Web2.0 has made it possible for both retailers and customers to engage in two-way communication and share valuable information about products and services offered online. Current studies have investigated users’ utilization of the technology while neglecting the provider’s part. This study is an attempt to integrates both the users and the providers and examines the utilization level of Web 2.0 technologies. Retailers utilized Web 2.0 functions that help them improve their marketing strategies, increase traffic to their websites and improve their sales. Some of these functions include data gathering through personalization, product reviews and ratings. Users on the other hand preferred Web 2.0 functions that allow them to better assess product and service quality such as product reviews, ratings, referrals and recommendations that signal product quality and website reliability It is clear from the results that consumers seek knowledge about products and services through various signaling methods such as product reviews, ratings, and expert opinions. Although expert opinions shape purchasing behaviors, only 20% of surveyed retailers offer this functionality.

Index Terms—Consumers, Retailer, e-Commerce, Web 2.0, Knowledge transfer functions, Product review, Product rating, Discussion board, Customized display, Recommender system, Expert opinion, FAQs, and Online manuals 

Cite: Yong-Mi Kim and Suliman Hawamdeh, "The Utilization of Web2.0 Functionalities on ECommerce Web Sites," Journal of Advances in Information Technology, Vol. 2, No. 4, pp. 190-198, November, 2011.doi:10.4304/jait.2.4.190-198