Segmenting The Web 2.0 Market: Behavioural And Usage Patterns Of Social Web Consumers

Carlota Lorenzo Romero, Efthymios Constantinides, Maria-del-Carmen Alarcon-del-Amo

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Abstract

The evolution of the commercial Internet to the current phase, commonly called Web 2.0 (or Social Web) has firmly positioned the web not only as a commercial but also as a social communication platform: an online environment facilitating peer-to-peer interaction, socialization, co-operation and information exchange. Internet users are not any more passive consumers of information but are actively involved in online creation, editing, and dissemination of content. They form virtual communities and interact with each other making use of a variety of interactive applications like social-networking sites, online forums, blogs, and wikis. This new social environment entails new challenges and opportunities for marketers, practitioners and behavioural researchers encompassing an appealing and untapped research area. In this empirical study we develop a classification of Web 2.0 users. Segments are identified on the basis of socio-demographic features, involvement, usage of the Internet, online purchase behaviour, personality characteristics, and the degree of use of Social Web sites. We analyze the differences between user segments, their trust levels and satisfaction and conclude that the degree of online experience is one of the most important antecedents of trust and satisfaction with Web 2.0 applications. The study identifies issues of further research and ways that can help field marketers to better map and understand their online markets in order to utilize effectively the Internet and particularly of the Web 2.0 domain as part of their marketing strategy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-66
JournalJournal of business case studies
Volume6
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Keywords

  • IR-87143
  • METIS-280415

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