Marketing professionals gradually utilize virtual communities as a new media for affecting sales by spreading information about brand, quality, price, experience, effectiveness, etc. Studies related to this subject usually focus on influence of electronic word of mouth and posters’ opinions on product choice. Lack of considering passive participants and natures of virtual community induces our interest. For comprehensively understanding every participant’s attitude toward information in virtual communities, we classified members based on their activities of posting, viewing and accepting information. According to the classification, we further explore comparative importance of antecedents regarding to members’ intention to adopt information for purchasing decision-making in variant groups. Data was collected by questionnaires and actual number of posting behaviors. Results show that the importance of economic, relational and social factors varies from different groups. Information shoppers, who browse most information and rarely post messages, view relational and social factors as main contributors toward intention to adopting information as a decision aid. Advice seekers, who expect to get effective recommendations and rarely post messages, think relational factors is a major determinant. Advice providers, who are primary posters and seldom accepting others’ opinions, think economic and social factors are important to intention of adopting information.
Huang, Li-Ting and Farn, Cheng-Kiang, "EFFECTS OF VIRTUAL COMMUNITIES ON PURCHASING DECISION-MAKING: THE MODERATING ROLE OF INFORMATION ACTIVITIES" (2009). PACIS 2009 Proceedings. 55.