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Abstract

With the proliferation of e-commerce, there is growing evidence that online impulse buying is an emerging phenomenon, which has been the focus of researchers from a variety of disciplines. This paper reports on two empirical studies that examine the interplay between a consumer’s inherent impulsiveness to buy and website quality. Specifically, consistent with past online impulse buying research, website quality manifests as an environmental cue that directly influences the likelihood that a consumer will experience an urge to buy impulsively. Further, highly impulsive consumers can be both positively and negatively influenced by varying degrees of website quality. Thus, while the objective quality of an e-commerce website is important, the inherent impulsiveness of a consumer is also a critical factor for understanding how and why individuals react impulsively to varying degrees of website quality. The implications of the results for both future research and the design of electronic commerce websites are discussed.

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