Consumers shop online for goal-oriented, instrumental reasons, and for experiential reasons. However, goaloriented motives are more common among online shoppers than are experiential motives. Based on our exploratory research of online shopping using 5 offline and 4 online focus groups conducted in conjunction with Harris Interactive, we identify and discuss attributes that facilitate goal-oriented online shopping, including accessibility/convenience, selection, information availability and lack of unwanted sociality from retail sales help or shopping partners such as spouses. The goal-oriented characteristics of online shopping collectively result in an experience that is involving for buyers, but which results in low commitment to purchasing. Buyers shop when and where they want, and are comfortable abandoning a site and products placed in a shopping cart either on a whim or to further consider their purchase; consumers often use the words "freedom" and "control" in explaining the value of online shopping. While consumers are more likely to describe offline rather than online shopping in experiential terms, we find evidence of experiential motivations for online shopping emerging. We offer managerial implications for cultivating goal-oriented and experiential online buyers.
Wolfinbarger, Mary and Gilly, Mary, "Consumer Motivations for Online Shopping" (2000). AMCIS 2000 Proceedings. 112.