The Internet is a popular source of information and advice especially within the fields of health and finance. Previous research has raised the issue of quality with respect to online information and has suggested differences between the way consumers and experts search for and appraise online information. However, many studies have asked students to act as ‘consumers’ or have relied upon artificial search tasks. This paper reports on research using ‘genuine’ consumers. The first study examines the trust markers held by genuine consumers in both the health and finance domains. The second study explores the perceptions of people who have actually used sources of online advice. The results indicate similarities between the trust markers of genuine consumers and experts. Trust markers differed between the two domains of health and finance and this was revealed in terms of the features of the sites visited. Genuine consumers may have different requirements and may be under different pressures compared to expert evaluators.
|Number of pages||22|
|Journal||Computers in Human Behavior|
|Early online date||8 Dec 2004|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2007|