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Identification of the characteristics of e-commerce websites

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Author(s): Musfiq Mannan Choudhury | Abdul Mannan Choudhury

Journal: Webology
ISSN 1735-188X

Volume: 7;
Issue: 1;
Start page: a77;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: E-commerce websites | Security | Navigation | Website characteristics

ABSTRACT
E-commerce websites must possess certain characteristics in order to attract customers/users. Although previous studies have been conducted to determine some of these characteristics of different categories of websites, but the characteristics unique to e-commerce websites (i.e. online stores) remain unknown. To obtain a comprehensive view of these characteristics, this study uses a focus groups study. Although this study is exploratory, it identified as many as 13 characteristics, which include: security, appearance, adequate information about products and services, speed in downloading the pages, navigation friendly, search option/search engine, hyperlinks to other information, information on member facilities, history and profile of the company, ability to obtain information in limited number of pages instead of browsing several pages, option for providing feedback from customers, visitor statistics, and availability of interactive online activities. A systematic analysis procedure for focus group discussion was adopted for analyzing the results. The study, however, suffers from lack of generalizability as the findings from a country where e-commerce is in its infancy stage may not be the same for a country where e-commerce is in an advanced stage.
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