Context-Dependent Product Evaluations: An Empirical Analysis of Internet Book Reviews

Journal of Interactive Marketing, Vol. 25, No. 3, pp. 123-133, 2011

29 Pages Posted: 19 Oct 2010 Last revised: 10 Aug 2014

See all articles by Ye Hu

Ye Hu

University of Houston - Bauer College of Business

Xinxin Li

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management

Date Written: October 1, 2010

Abstract

Using book review data on Amazon.com, the authors extend current research into online consumer reviews by empirically investigating the context dependence effect in the review writing process. They find that when product quality remains constant, later reviews tend to differ from previously posted ones, and the difference is moderated by the popularity of the product, the variance of previous reviews, whether later reviews explicitly refer to previous reviews, and the age of the product and the reviews. This phenomenon can be explained by both consumer expectation and self-selection effects in review writing. The implications of this research can help practitioners understand the reviewing process and provide some guidelines for improving the objectivity of online product reviews.

Keywords: online reviews, context dependence, self-selection effect, expectation effect, ordered logistic model

JEL Classification: C23, D60, D80, M31

Suggested Citation

Hu, Ye and Li, Xinxin, Context-Dependent Product Evaluations: An Empirical Analysis of Internet Book Reviews (October 1, 2010). Journal of Interactive Marketing, Vol. 25, No. 3, pp. 123-133, 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1694146 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1694146

Ye Hu

University of Houston - Bauer College of Business ( email )

Houston, TX 77204-6021
United States

Xinxin Li (Contact Author)

University of Connecticut - Department of Operations & Information Management ( email )

368 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-2041
United States
(860) 486-3062 (Phone)

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