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The impact of age and shopping experiences on the classification of search,


experience, and credence goods in online shopping

Article  in  Information Systems and e-Business Management · March 2012


DOI: 10.1007/s10257-010-0156-y · Source: DBLP

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To be published on Information Systems and eBusiness Management
DOI: 10.1007/s10257-010-0156-y

THE IMPACT OF AGE AND SHOPPING


EXPERIENCES ON THE CLASSIFICATION OF
SEARCH, EXPERINECE, AND CREDENCE
GOODS IN ONLINE SHOPPING

Yun Wan

University of Houston-Victoria
Phone: 281-275-8807
Fax: 281-275-3361
Email: wany@uhv.edu

Makoto Nakayama

DePaul University
Email: MNakayama@cti.depaul.edu
Norma Sutcliffe

DePaul University
Email: NSutcliffe@cdm.depaul.edu

Abstract

This study explores how age and Web shopping influence the SEC ratings of
product and services in online shopping. Using the survey data collected from
549 consumers, we investigated how they perceive the uncertainty of product
quality on six search, experience and credence goods. The ANOVA results show
that age and the Web shopping experience of consumers are significant factors. A
generation gap is identified for all but one experience good. Web shopping
experience is not a significant factor for search goods but is for experience and
credence goods. There is an interaction effect between age and Web shopping
experience for one credence good. Implications of these results are discussed.

Keywords
Online shopping, generation gap, quality perceptions, search goods, experience
goods, credence goods

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THE IMPACT OF AGE AND SHOPPING


EXPERIENCES ON THE CLASSIFICATION OF
SEARCH, EXPERINECE, AND CREDENCE
GOODS IN ONLINE SHOPPING

INTRODUCTION

Conventional wisdom is that teens and young adults have advantages in online
shopping because they are quick in learning and adapting to the new online
shopping environment. Older generation probably do not shop online as much
because they are less familiar and slower in adapting the new environment. Thus,
the older generations shy away from online shopping more than the younger
generations.
But, several recent surveys indicate that this may not be the case. For example,
according to a survey by Pew Research [1], though older generations use the
Internet less for socializing and entertainment, they do use it more as a tool for
information searches, emailing, and buying products. In addition, now both
young and old equally pursue video downloads, online travel reservations, and
work-related research. Another survey conducted by University of Southern
California found that older Americans have equal or even more enthusiasm
towards Web 2.0 than their younger, more tech-savvy counterparts [2]. The same
survey indicates that while instant messaging and video downloading still remain
more popular with the younger generations, older Americans check the Internet
more frequently for news. The older generations are logging onto online
communities, researching purchases, becoming socially active and playing games
in increasing numbers [2]. Also a survey by a UK-based media company in
December 2008 found that there were no significant differences between younger
and older generations in terms of their general shopping behavior and concerns
about online fraud [3].
The older generation might be slow in learning new technologies and in a
disadvantageous position in terms of keeping up with the trends on Web when
compared to their younger counterparts. However, on a second thought, older
generations do have more shopping experience, even though most of such
experiences are rooted in the traditional environment. Such experiences may give
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them an edge in evaluating and purchasing certain type of products or services on


the Web.
Thus the reality of online shopping by different age groups may be more complex
than a simple dyad of young and fast versus old and slow. It is possible that both
groups have their advantages and disadvantages when shopping online. Their
behavior in online shopping and reactions to shopping technologies might also be
different because of their accumulated shopping experience in Main Street as well
as online. The same survey by Pew Research found that, in terms of preference of
online shopping, instead of a downward linear trend with age, interest in online
shopping is significantly lower among both the youngest and oldest groups –
“38% of online teens buy products online, as do 56% of internet users ages 64-72
and 47% of internet users age 73 and older.” – and significantly higher among
those in the medium range, with 80% for age 33-44 and 71% for age 18-32 [1].
So the conventional wisdom may underestimate the online shopping tendency and
ability of older generation online shoppers. They may not only more active in
online shopping than expected but also have more experience because of their
accumulated shopping experienced in traditional environment. If we stick with the
conventional wisdom, it may lead to bad strategies for online vendors and ignored
potential business opportunities existed in old generation online shoppers. Thus it
is critical for us to explore this research question in a more rigorous way.
In this study, we examined how the age and shopping experience influence
consumers’ classification of search, experience, and credence goods. Through the
lens of SEC, we found that age, Web shopping and search knowledge, as well as
prior purchase experience all have significant influence on a consumer’s quality
evaluation as reflected in SEC rating, which lead to different SEC rating to the
same product.
The remainder of this paper is arranged as follows. First, we review previous
studies of factors that have impact online shopping as well as SEC framework.
Then we explain our survey-based empirical experiment design as well as
outcomes. Finally, we analyze the results and conclude the study.

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PREVIOUS STUDIES

Search, experience, and credence goods perception


Consumers were used to conducting shopping in an environment where they can
inspect the goods directly and converse with the sellers or service providers in a
face to face context. And depending on at which time point consumers can
confidently evaluate the quality of the goods, we can classify them into three
categories: search, experience, and credence, hence the so-called SEC framework
[4-6]. Specifically, search goods are those that consumers can confidently
evaluate the quality before the purchase. Experience goods are those consumers
can evaluate the quality once they were consumed or serviced. Credence goods
are those consumers can not evaluate the quality of them even a long time after
the purchase.
Because of the differences in time stages that consumers can evaluate a product
confidently, they have to use different product evaluation strategies when making
shopping decisions. In a traditional brick and mortar market, consumers may use
direct inspection method to evaluate search goods, and sampling strategy for
experience goods. But for credence goods, they largely depend on the brand name
and recommendations to make decisions since they have difficulty to evaluate the
quality directly. Different shopping and product evaluation behaviors by
consumers lead to different advertising and promotion strategies by vendors for
different SEC categories. The SEC framework has been widely adopted in the
advertising industry as well as used in consumer behavior research [7].
SEC framework provides a relatively objective classification schema for
commodities. The fact that it is being widely adopted in advertising industry
indicated the classification method applies to most populations. However, we also
realized that for a specific product or service, depending on the familiarity with it,
a particular consumer may rate this product or service in a different SEC category
from other consumers’ ratings. For example, a Dell laptop is a search product for
computer geeks but the same laptop could be an experience product for computer
rookies.
Such differences in perception by individuals originated from two sources.
Firstly, any products or service has multiple attribute dimensions and these
attributes could range from search and experience to credence categories – that is,
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some of them could be evaluated prior to purchase, others after purchase, while
still others could not be evaluated even after the long term use. In other words,
any goods could have search, experience, and credence attributes simultaneously.
It depends on the category of those attributes we are most concern with about a
product or service that we classify this product or service into a specific SEC
category. Though the generally accepted SEC category for a particular product
indicates the most concerned attributes by the majority, it is possible that for a
specific individual, such attributes are less important than some attributes in other
SEC categories. This becomes the first source of differentiation in perception.
Secondly, the importance of a product or service to us could be largely deducted
from the utility it brings to us, which is objective in most cases, especially for
commodities. However, the ability of inference of some attributes information
from other attributes information varies among individuals and largely depending
on prior shopping experience.
For example, when a computer geek thinks a Dell laptop is a search product, he
really means that based on his prior experience of using laptop, he can infer the
quality of experience and credence attributes of the laptop by observing its search
attributes. He can check the smoothness of program launch, listen the sound of
hard disk and CPU fan, observe the screen display quality, and touch the keyboard
to infer those experience or credence attributes like the overall integration
soundness and efficiency of heat dissipation. The latter may greatly influence the
usage life span of a laptop, which is largely a credence attribute. Since a rookie
user of laptop does not have such experience, he or she may either regard it as an
experience product or even a credence product.
Above analysis illustrate an importance aspect of SEC framework that we can use
to explore our research question: since the prior experience of a consumer may
influence its evaluation of a product or service, we can detect the age impact on
online shopping from the SEC rating of same product or services by different age
groups. Next, we explore this in details.

Goods evaluation in Web shopping environment


With the growing popularity of World Wide Web starting in 1994, online
shopping became part of our daily life. In this new online environment, no goods
can be inspected directly and only limited interactions with service providers are

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possible [8]. Thus, by default, goods in online shopping automatically becomes


either experience or credence goods according to SEC framework, though later
our experiment indicated otherwise.
Regarding how to evaluate goods in online environment, the behaviors and
strategies employed by shoppers influenced by several key factors. Bhatnagar et
al. [9] found that age, years of using the Web, and gender affect purchase risk
perceptions differently, thus leading to different behaviors and strategies. A more
recent study that examines the demographic factors like age, gender, income and
location on online shopping found above factors influence online purchase
frequency and expenditures [10].
Age is essentially a rough indicator of Main Street shopping experience
accumulated through the times. For the younger generations, they have limited
shopping experience but cleverly using those shopping tools to leverage their
existing shopping experience is their advantage. For older generation, we
speculate that, while the adaptation process may take longer, their rich Main
Street shopping experiences gives them advantages. There were evidences pointed
to this assumption. For example, in several related studies on the correlation
between online search and actual purchase of products, it was found that though
young people are more likely to purchase online, if considering the time people
spend on online search for the product, older generation are comparatively more
likely to purchase because they spent less time to search [11] . This implied that
older generations may have more experience on evaluating products thus they
spend less time on search.
Like age, gender is another important factor in explaining many differences in
consumers’ shopping behaviors and perception of goods. However, it seems this
is not the case in online environment. A research study by Stafford et al. [12]
examine online shopping behaviors from international and cross-cultural
perspectives. They found gender has no significant influence on shopping
behavior. They also explored if older consumers are less likely to shop online
regardless of country origin and found that the age group 25-34 was the most
active online shopping group. The level of online shopping in this age group is
statistically different from that of age group 18-24. The other age groups have
similar levels of online shopping involvement. Similar findings from mobile
commerce research find that younger consumers are more predisposed to use the

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mobile equipment as a shopping channel [13]. Gender and social class are not
significant factors for mobile commerce adoption.
Web shopping experience, including using various Web-based decision support
tools to conduct the searching, comparing, and analyzing products and services in
the online environment plays an important role in the perception and evaluation of
goods on the Web. Though some studies [14, 15] assumed that younger people are
“more Web-literate than older age groups” [14], one research found that young
consumers with more Web shopping experience have a more positive attitude
towards Web shopping than those without it [16]. The study implies that Web
shopping experience begets a more positive stance towards Web shopping
regardless of age. Another research [13] indicates that the Web shopping
experience has a positive influence on adopting m-commerce, which indirectly
indicated this.
In summary, in the online environment, we identify following factors may
influence online shopper’s SEC ratings. They are age, gender, Web shopping
experiences, Web search experience, and prior purchase experience for the same
goods. Next, we develop hypothesis to test the validity of the impact.

HYPOTHESIS

As mentioned previously, depending on when a consumer can confidently


evaluate the quality of a product or service, that product or service can be
categorized as a search, experience, or credence goods. However, such rating is
mostly depending on an individual’s previous purchase and usage experience,
especially for experience and credence goods. Compared with the same product
or service, the older generation consumer generally accumulated more experience
on a product or service before may regard it less as credence or experience good
than a younger consumer who has no prior experience with it. We expect such
differences also exist in the online shopping environment. Thus, we have our first
hypothesis:
H1: Online shoppers assess the SEC ratings of the same goods differently based
on their age group with older generation tends to rate the same goods as less
credence than younger generation.
Based on existing research of the gender impact on goods perception in online
shopping, we have following hypothesis:

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H2: Gender has no significant influence on the SEC classification of the same
goods by online shoppers.
Since online shopping is a relatively new shopping mode and is still less than 15%
of the U.S. retailing market, we expect that the extent to which an online shopper
evaluates goods online is highly influenced by that shopper’s Web purchasing
experience and online search skills. A Web savvy shopper may rate credence
goods more like experience goods and experience goods more like a search goods
in the online environment.
H3: Online Shoppers assess the SEC classification of the same goods differently
based on their level of Web shopping experience and those shoppers who have
more Web shopping experience tend to rate the same goods as less credence than
those with less Web shopping experience.
Since the evaluation of product or service in online environment also depends on
the search and process of information from the Web, the search engine experience
of an online shopper may influence his or her SEC rating for the product or
service. If an online shopper is familiar with using search engine to find product
or service quality information, he or she may tend to evaluate such product or
service more towards search goods direction compares with those less familiar
with using search engine, when all other conditions being the same. Thus, we
have hypothesis 4:
H4: Shoppers assess the SEC classification of the same goods differently based on
their level of online search engine experience and those shoppers who have more
search engine experience tend to rate the same goods as less credence than those
with less search engine experience.
In addition to general shopping experience accumulated with age, when someone
has prior purchase experience of a particular product or service, he or she may feel
less uncertain about this product or service in later purchase and such confidence
may be accumulated with each additional purchase of the same product or service.
Thus, one may change their future perception of this product or service from more
credence to more experience or from more experience to more search category.
This experience accumulation can come from either online or Main Street prior
purchases experience. Thus we have hypothesis 5:
H5: Shoppers assess the SEC classification of the same goods differently based on
whether or not they have prior purchasing experience of the goods and those

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shoppers who have prior purchase experience of the goods tend to rate the same
goods as less credence than those do not have.
Now we have explained all our hypotheses. In the next section, we explain the
design of our experiment to verify these hypotheses.

RESEARCH DESIGN

Since the most direct method of obtaining SEC rating of a product or service is
asking the shopper to rate it [17-19], we use similar survey-based questionnaires
by asking subjects for their SEC ratings of a pre-selected set of goods.
The selection of the set of candidate goods is a critical step in this research. To
avoid reinventing the wheel, we conducted a comprehensive review of previous
literature to identify candidate goods that have been repeatedly identified in the
same SEC category by at least two prior literatures though all contexts of such
ratings are assumed in the traditional shopping environment. As a result, we got a
relatively long list of more than ten products and services. Then we found the
necessity to use common goods whose purchases are relatively neutral to age,
gender, income and ethnic groups. This leads to six goods as representative SEC
goods, two in each SEC category. They are:
Search goods include PCs and bestselling books [7, 18, 20, 21].
Experience goods include cell phones and cars [4, 18, 19].
Credence goods include vitamins and auto insurance [18, 22, 23].
We created three scenarios for examining the influence of shopping contexts. In
the first scenario, shoppers can only shop online for the above six items (“Web
Only”). In the second scenario, they can only shop the six items in traditional
environment and cannot use the Web at all (“No Web”). In the third scenario,
consumers can shop around these six items by using any means – whether using
the Web or not (“No Restriction”).
In each scenario, there are two survey sections. The first section collected
subject’s age, gender, Web shopping experience, and web information search
experience.
In the second section, respondents identified the SEC category for the six selected
items. We used the same survey instrument as Iacobucci [19] and asked
respondents to rate items in their respective SEC category by using a 7-point
Likert scale on a single item construct. That is, we asked the respondent to

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evaluate if the quality of an item “could be assessed prior to purchase” (search),


“could be evaluated only after purchase” (experience), or “would be difficult
evaluate even after trial” (credence). And similar ratings were conducted in all
three scenarios.
For each of the six goods, we asked if the subject had purchased it from the Web
or Main Street before, the frequency of purchases, and the ratio of purchases
between online vs. Main Street.

PILOT STUDY AND DATA COLLECTION

To examine the effectiveness of the experiment, we conducted a pilot study with


students from two Midwest and Southwest universities. Based on the feedback of
the students, we made improvements on the readability of several statements. The
overall structure of the experiment proved effective.
We then recruited subjects from general population by using online forums and
sites like Craigslist. A modest amount of Amazon.com gift certificate was used as
an incentive for participation. We removed those responses that were incomplete
or invalid (e.g., entering the first choice for all the questions).
Altogether this study received 549 valid completed questionnaires, 52.4% are
male, and 47.6% are female. This indicates a largely balanced sample of the
general population.

DATA ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS

We first calculated the mean SEC ratings for each items and the summary is listed
in Table 1.The overall mean is calculated based on all cases. The subsequent three
set of means are calculated based on three scenarios as indicated in research
design.
Overall Web Only No Web No Restriction
Std. Std. Std. Std.
Mean Mean Mean Mean
Dev. Dev. Dev. Dev.
PC 1.90 1.26 1.98 1.18 1.77 1.27 1.93 1.34
Book 2.08 1.30 2.04 1.28 2.12 1.33 2.10 1.29
Cell Phone 2.21 1.30 2.19 1.27 2.20 1.30 2.25 1.34
Car 2.37 1.46 2.25 1.38 2.52 1.53 2.37 1.46
Vitamin 2.69 1.60 2.74 1.64 2.68 1.61 2.64 1.57
Auto
2.28 1.51 2.20 1.48 2.30 1.49 2.36 1.56
Insurance

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Table 1: Summary statistics for SEC rating means

As indicated in the pattern, the overall order of SEC ratings of these six items is in
accordance with the ratings collected from previous literatures in traditional
shopping environment. That is, PC and Book as search goods have less SEC
ratings than experience goods such as cell phone and cars. And the latter two
items have less SEC ratings than vitamin, the credence goods. The only exception
is auto insurance. Though considered as credence goods and being much difficult
to evaluate than search and experience goods in previous literature, in this study,
it was considered as about the same as experience goods such as cell phone and
cars. All these are findings are easily identified in Figure 1.

Figure 1 Overall SEC ratings

In addition, through t-test, we found that there are no statistically significant


differences for the mean ratings of the same item among three scenarios. This
confirmed our original selections of items are rather neutral to shopping
environmental factors.
Further analysis indicates the Skewness and Kurtosis statistics have a range of
0.185 to 0.55 and -0.212 to -0.722 respectively. This indicates a cluster to the low
value range of SEC ratings as well as flatness in the distribution with too many
cases in the extremes.
Hierarchical multiple regression analysis models were being tested to examine the
impact of general factors like age and Web shopping experience as well as the
combined effect of prior purchase experience of the item respectively. Table 2 is
the summary of statistics. The outcome indicates that H1 is generally supported
(except for Cell Phone and Vitamin). H2 is not supported. H3 is generally
supported by experience and credence goods except Vitamin. H4 is not supported.

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H5 is partially supported by search products. Next, we extend the analysis in


details.
Product Significant factors for SEC rating
PC Age* (Beta = -0.103; Sig = 0.034)
Prior PC Purchase** (Beta = 0.189; Sig = 0.006)
Time spend to collect information about PC before purchase*
(Beta = -0.089; Sig = 0.037)
Bestselling book Age** (Beta = -0.132; Sig = 0.009)
Cell phone Web shopping experience** (Beta = -0.147; Sig = 0.004)
Car Age* (Beta = -0.116; Sig = 0.045)
Web shopping experience** (Beta = -0.178; Sig = 0.002)
Vitamins Time spend to collect information about Vitamin before
purchase* (Beta = -0.113; Sig = 0.028)
Auto insurance Age** (Beta = -0.207; Sig = 0.001)
*:  = .05, **:  = .01

Table 2: Significant Impact Factors on SEC ratings

The Impact of Age on SEC ratings


By examining the effect of individual goods, we found that H1 is supported for all
goods except cell phone and Vitamin. Specifically, PC’s SEC rating is higher for
age 30-39 than for age 50-59. Bestselling book’s SEC rating is higher for age 20-
29 than for age 40-49. Car’s SEC rating is higher for age groups 18-19, 20-29 and
30-39 than for age 40-49. Auto insurance’s SEC rating is higher for age 20-29
than for age 30-39 and 40-49.
While statistically not significant, the charts on SEC ratings vs. age groups show
as follows (Figure 2). For cell phones, the SEC ratings of Web-only group of age
40-49 is more than a 0.5 point lower than those of the no-Web and no-restriction
groups of the same age. For cars, the SEC rating of Web-only group of age 18-19
is 0.75 point lower than those of the no-Web and no-restriction groups of the same
age. In the credence goods category, for vitamins, the SEC ratings of the Web-
only group are much lower (by .8 to 1.3) than those of the no-Web group among
age groups 18-19 and 40-49. For auto insurance, the SEC ratings of the Web-only
group are lower by .5 to 1.0 point than those of the no-Web group among age
groups 40 or above.

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Figure 2: Age Group and SEC ratings

The impact of Web shopping experience on SEC ratings


Upon further examination of the Web Shopping experience variable, we find that
H3 is supported for experience and credence goods but not for search goods (PCs
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and bestselling books). In the experience goods category, we find that, for cell
phones, shoppers with less Web shopping experience generally give higher SEC
ratings. There is a statistically significant difference between the shoppers with
the least Web shopping experience and those with the most Web shopping
experience. For cars, similar results are observed. The shoppers with the most
Web shopping experience have statistically lower SEC ratings than the shoppers
with the modest Web shopping experience. For credence goods like vitamins and
auto insurance, the shoppers with the most Web shopping experience have lower
SEC ratings compared with the shoppers that have less Web shopping experience.

The interaction effect of age and Web shopping experience


There is a concave relationship between age and Web shopping experience
(Figure 2). Web shopping experience increases steadily from age group 18-19 to
40-49. This is probably due to patterns in income levels and family/life style.
Web shopping experience peaks at 40-49, and then it declines.
This pattern parallels that of consumer spending figure by age in the Consumer
Expenditure Survey of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics1 .

Figure 3. Web Shopping Experience and Age Group

Since both age and Web shopping experience have significant impacts on SEC
ratings, their interaction effect may also influence. It is possible that the SEC
ratings for the same goods are rated differently in their SEC category by
consumers with a combination of age and Web shopping experience. Specifically,
older generation with more Web shopping experience rate credence, experience,
and search goods more towards experience and search goods compared with other

1
Details could be found via http://www.bls.gov/cex/2007/Standard/age.pdf

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combinations. Through our analysis, we found this is supported for search and
credence goods, but mixed for experience goods. Here are details:
Age impacts the SEC ratings only for search goods. For experience goods, car’s
SEC ratings are affected by age and Web shopping experience. However, cell
phone’s SEC ratings are affected only by Web shopping experience. Both age
and Web shopping experience impact the SEC ratings of credence goods. The
summary of ANOVA with post-hoc tests are as follows (Table 2).

Product Significant factors for SEC rating


PC age** (30-39 vs. 50-59*)
Bestselling book age*** (20-29 vs. 40-49***)
Cell phone web shop experience** (slightly above novice vs. expert web
shoppers*)
Car age*** (18-19 vs. 40-49**, 20-29 vs. 40-49***, 30-39 vs. 40-
49***) and Web shopping experience**
web shop experience*** (moderate vs. expert web shoppers***)
Vitamins age* (no between-age group significance)
web shop experience** (occasional vs. moderate web
shoppers***, moderate vs. expert web shoppers***)
Auto insurance age*** (20-29 vs. 40-49***, 30-39 vs. 40-49*)
web shop experience** (moderate vs. expert web shoppers**)
interaction between age and web shop experience*
*:  = .10, **:  = .05, ***:  = .01

Table 3: SEC ratings by age group, Web shopping experience and their interactions

IMPLICATIONS

There are several important implications from this research.


First, we find that the more Web shopping experience an individual has, the less
one feels uncertain about product quality regardless of age. This indicates that the
traditional SEC classification for goods and its directive function on advertising
maybe limited by an individual’s Web shopping experience. For younger
generation, though they have less shopping experience that can be used to

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evaluate products and services, their relatively rich Web shopping experience may
compensate this limitation.
Second, even controlling for Web shopping experience, the age gap exists
regarding how uncertain consumers feel about product quality. As indicated
previously, age group 40-49 seems benefit most from their past Web shopping
experience because they have an optimal combination of long enough Main Street
and Web shopping experience. Their Main Street shopping experiences came
from their accumulation through the ages. They are also the first generation that
has both the income and opportunity to be familiar with the Internet and the Web
as well as conducting online shopping. Thus, they have the comparatively best
combined advantage. Their perception of goods, which is reflected in SEC
ratings, is also significantly lower for most item categories in the experiment.
Third, the impact of online shoppers’ age and Web shopping experience are
different on search, experience, and credence goods. The evaluation of credence
goods probably requires both cumulative (long-term) Web shopping experience
and Main Street experience (age) to lower product quality uncertainty. This
indicates age and Web-shopping experience are both very important to reduce the
quality evaluation challenge for online shoppers. The SEC ratings of search
goods, on the other hand, are more sensitive to age.
It is a bit surprising to know that the SEC ratings are not affected by prior
purchase experience for a specific product or service. This could be the benefit of
easy access of product or service review information on the Web – since an
individual could always depend on others’ experience retried by electronic
decision aids like comparison-shopping agents.

CONCLUSION

The generation gap exists in many shopping scenarios. This research explored the
age gap in the perception of goods in search, experience, and credence goods, or
the SEC framework, specifically for the online shopping environment. We find
that age and Web shopping experience, and in some cases, their interaction, have
significant influence on online shoppers’ perception of search, experience and
credence goods. Even controlling Web shopping experience, we found the effect
of generation gap on how consumers feel about product quality. Web shopping
experience and senior age can reduce the uncertainty towards credence goods

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DOI: 10.1007/s10257-010-0156-y

while the perception of search goods are only sensitive to age. We believe these
findings will have important implications for future research on the SEC
framework in the online environment.

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