Does recommendation matter for trusting beliefs and trusting intentions? Focused on different types of recommender system and sponsored recommendation

Claire Whang, Hyunjoo Im

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Purpose: The advance of technology creates new possibilities for enhancing shopper experience. The purpose of this paper is to gain understanding of a recent innovation found in retail environment, a recommender system (RS). Specifically, this study investigated how the retailer’s claims of RS affect consumers’ perception of personalization, and further, trusting beliefs and intentions. Additionally, the effect of sponsored recommendation (SR) on consumers’ perceived trust was explored. Design/methodology/approach: A 2 (RS claim: personalized/non-personalized)×2 (SR: present/absent)×2 (involvement: high/low) between subject factorial design was employed. An online experiment was conducted. A total of 273 response collected through Amazon MTurk were used for the analysis. Findings: The findings showed retailer’s claims for RS were enough to increase the perception of personalization. The increased perceived personalization of the RS increased trusting beliefs and trusting intention. For SR, mixed results were found. Disclosing SR increased trusting intentions under the low-involvement condition, but the opposite effect was found under high-involvement condition. Practical implications: The findings highlight the importance of retailers’ articulating what RS does. This can impact trusting beliefs and trusting intention. Additionally, the findings indicate SRs should be presented in accordance to the decision-making stage. The presence of SRs during the searching stage may positively impact consumer’s perception, but their presence during purchase stage may have a negative impact. Originality/value: This study is among the first to examine the effect of different retailer’s claims on how the recommendations are generated on shopper’s perception. Also, this is one of few studies to investigate how SRs in RSs impact a shopper’s perception. This research provides insights into how an RS found in retail environment influence shopping experience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)944-958
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Retail and Distribution Management
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 5 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited.


  • Elaboration likelihood model
  • Perceived personalization
  • Recommender system
  • Sponsored recommendation
  • Trust


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