This paper lays out a research proposal of systematically analyzing and comparing the decision effects of online product information types. Hardly any in-depth knowledge is currently available on how different information types influence online consumer trust and purchase intention. To address this research gap, we apply a generic function-based topical relevance typology to classify the variety of online product information and plan for focused comparisons of the functional roles played by different information types in e-retailing. Understanding the differential impacts of each information type provides a basis for prioritizing online information provisioning and organization, which becomes particularly meaningful in the current context of information overload. The paper briefly reviews information research in e-commerce, introduces the product type as an important moderating factor, and discusses the conceptual basis and applicability of applying the generic relevance typology to analyze product relevant information. The research model and preliminary hypotheses are also described.
Huang, Xiaoli; Xie, Kang; and Xiao, Jinghua, "Applying a Topical Relevance Typology to Analyze Online Product Information Types and Their Effects on Internet Consumer Decision" (2012). Eleventh Wuhan International Conference on e-Business. 52.