Affiliated Organization

Proceedings of JAIS Theory Development Workshop


Trust is just as essential to online business as it is to offline transactions but can be more difficult to achieve-especially for newer websites with unknown web vendors. Research on web-based trust development explains that web vendor trust can be created by both cognitive and affective (e.g., emotion-based) influences. But under what circumstances will emotion or cognition be more dominate in trust establishment? Theory-based answers to these questions can help online web vendors design better websites that account for unleveraged factors that will increase trust in the web vendor. To this end, we use the Affect Infusion Model and trust transference to propose the Affect-Trust Infusion Model (ATIM) that explains and predicts how and when cognition, through perceived website performance (PwP), and positive emotion (PEmo) each influence web vendor trust. ATIM explains the underlying causal mechanisms that determine the degree of affect infusion and the subsequent processing strategy that a user adopts when interacting with a new website. Under high-affect infusion, PEmo acts as a mediator between PwP and vendor trust; under low-affect infusion, PwP primarily impacts trust and PEmo is dis-intermediated. We review two distinct, rigorously validated experiments that empirically support ATIM. To further extend the contributions of ATIM, we demonstrate how use of specific contextual features-rooted in theory and that drive one's choice of affect infusion and cognitive processing-can be leveraged into a methodology that we propose to further enhance user-centered design (UCD). We further detail several exciting research opportunities that can leverage ATIM.