The moderating role of information load on online product presentation
Online product presentations, which help consumers obtain product information, have an important role in shopping websites. Two major information types, visual and textual information, govern the modalities of consumers in acquiring product-related information from most online product presentations. Previous studies have debated on which of these two information types can enhance the shopping performance of consumers. However, these debates have resulted in dichotomous outcomes. In this regard, the factor(s) that contribute to such divided results must be examined. In this study, we use the level of processing theory and information load to examine the effect of online product presentations on the online shopping performance of consumers. A laboratory experiment has also been conducted. The results of data analysis show that information load has a significant moderating role on the effects of online product presentations. The experimental results show that visual-based online product presentation has a greater effect on the shopping performance of consumers in high information load condition, whereas textual-based online product presentation provides greater performance advantages in low information load condition. Finally, the implications of these findings to both academics and practitioners are discussed.