Evidence of the Effect of Trust Building Technology in Electronic Markets: Price Premiums and Buyer Behavior

MIS Quarterly, Vol. 26, No. 3, pp. 243-268, September 2002

26 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2006

See all articles by Sulin Ba

Sulin Ba

University of Connecticut School of Business

Paul A. Pavlou

Temple University - Department of Management Information Systems; Temple University - Department of Strategic Management

Abstract

Despite the wide use of reputational mechanisms such as eBay's Feedback Forum to promote trust, empirical studies have shown conflicting results as to whether online feedback mechanisms induce trust and lead to higher auction prices. This study examines the extent to which trust can be induced by proper feedback mechanisms in electronic markets, and how some risk factors play a role in trust formation. Drawing from economic, sociological, and marketing theories and using data from both an online experiment and an online auction market, we demonstrate that appropriate feedback mechanisms can induce calculus-based credibility trust without repeated interactions between two transacting parties. Trust can mitigate information asymmetry by reducing transaction-specific risks, therefore generating price premiums for reputable sellers. In addition, the research also examines the role that trust plays in mitigating the risks inherent in transactions that involve very expensive products.

Keywords: Trust, credibility, reputation, information asymmetry, price premiums, feedback mechanisms, electronic markets, online risks

Suggested Citation

Ba, Sulin and Pavlou, Paul A., Evidence of the Effect of Trust Building Technology in Electronic Markets: Price Premiums and Buyer Behavior. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=951734

Sulin Ba (Contact Author)

University of Connecticut School of Business ( email )

368 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-2041
United States

Paul A. Pavlou

Temple University - Department of Management Information Systems ( email )

1810 N. 13th Street
Floor 2
Philadelphia, PA 19128
United States

Temple University - Department of Strategic Management ( email )

Fox School of Business and Management
Philadelphia, PA 19122
United States

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