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Empirical investigation of online searching and buying and their relationship to shopping trips

Farag, Sendy; Schwanen, Tim; Dijst, Martin


Sendy Farag

Tim Schwanen

Martin Dijst


Searching product information or buying goods online is becoming increasingly popular and could affect shopping trips. However, the relationship between e-shopping and in-store shopping is currently unclear. The aim of this study is to investigate empirically how the frequencies of online searching, online buying, and nondaily shopping trips relate to each other, after controlling for sociodemographic, land use, behavioral, and attitudinal characteristics. Data were collected from 826 respondents residing in four municipalities (one urban, three suburban) in the center of the Netherlands, with the use of a shopping survey. Path analysis was used to model direct and indirect effects. The findings suggest that complementarity or generation between e-shopping and in-store shopping appears to be more likely than substitution. The more often people search online, the more shopping trips they tend to make. Individuals who frequently search or buy online tend to be male, young, single, adventurous, and frequent Internet users; have a high income; and have a positive attitude toward e-shopping. The residential environment affects e-shopping indirectly via Internet use; urban residents shop online more often than suburban residents do because urban residents use the Internet more often. Frequent in-store shoppers tend to be female and highly educated, have a high income, have no car, and have a positive attitude toward in-store shopping. It appears that for most individuals e-shopping is just another way of shopping, complementary to their in-store shopping.


Farag, S., Schwanen, T., & Dijst, M. (2005). Empirical investigation of online searching and buying and their relationship to shopping trips. Transportation Research Record, 1926(1926), 242-251.

Journal Article Type Conference Paper
Publication Date Jan 1, 2005
Journal Transportation Research Record
Print ISSN 0361-1981
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Volume 1926
Issue 1926
Pages 242-251
Keywords empirical investigation, online searching and buying, shopping trips
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