Beyond trialConsumer assimilation of electronic channels

Devon Johnson, Montclair State University


This paper explores the assimilation of electronic channels into consumers' routines. It proposes that consumer learning orientation for the product/service and the efficiency realized from channel use are essential determinants of post-trial assimilation and that assimilation reduces information ambiguity and improves consumers' sense of identity with the firm.These relationships are tested using data from a survey of online banking customers. The study reveals that consumer efficiency and learning orientation influence assimilation more strongly than some other determinants of consumer trial and that assimilation improves consumers' understanding of the service and facilitates a greater sense of identity with the firm.Theoretical implications are discussed and suggestions are presented on how managers can increase the rate of customer electronic channel assimilation and how to take strategic advantage of this.