What Factors Affect the Usefulness of Online Reviews? An Empirical Study Based on Signaling Theory
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Song Sujuan, Peng Wei, and Cai Limei
Online reviews play an increasingly important role in consumers' purchasing decisions. How to identify high-quality online reviews has become a research hot-spots. Based on the signaling theory, this paper explores the factors that affect the usefulness of online reviews from three aspects: the signals related to reviewers, the signals related to review characteristics, and the signals related to feedback. Through the empirical analysis of 2305 valid samples in JD.com, it is found that additional reviews, review videos, number of review replies and number of pictures have a significant impact on the usefulness of online reviews, and the most obvious impact of them is the number of review replies. But the reviewer's credit rating have not significant effect on the usefulness of online review. The research’s findings are of great practical significance to the management of e-commerce platforms, the improvement of merchant products, and the consumers’ purchasing decisions.
Online reviews; Usefulness of online reviews; Signaling theory