Online Customer Reviews and Consumer Evaluation: The Role of Review Font
52 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2016 Last revised: 10 Aug 2017
Date Written: August 2017
Inspired by the literature on processing fluency and the practical question of how to choose fonts for website design, we investigated the impact of customer reviews on consumer evaluation under an easy-to-read (vs. difficult-to-read) review font. We found that the feeling of ease in reading led consumers to judge the reviewers as more credible, thus increasing the impact of the reviews. Moreover, the effect of font diminished when consumers elaborated information more thoroughly (when high in need for cognition, or in an accountable situation), and thus did not use simple heuristics (reading ease) to judge the credibility of the review.
Keywords: processing ease, review valence, online customer reviews, credibility, need for cognition, accountability
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