Antecedents and consequences of consumers’ trust in electronic intermediaries: An empirical study of hotel booking websites

in Frontiers of Business Research in China
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Electronic intermediaries are recognized as one of the most significant B2C business models in the Internet era. A trustworthy intermediary website functions as both an information intermediary and a credibility intermediary. Given the critical role of trust in driving online purchase behaviors, the technology acceptance model (TAM) has been applied to investigating the impact of technology on online trust from the perspective of users’ perception of Web interface. However, consumers’ trust in an electronic intermediary derives from not only technological factors, but also factors of brand reputation and consumers’ individual experiences. We conducted an experiment in the context of hotel booking websites. Results based on structural equation modeling indicate that the impact of an intermediary’s reputation exceeds that of technology acceptance. Besides, reputation sum and reputation distance, which stand for synthesis effect and the cask effect respectively, are the two mechanisms of trust transfer.

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