How online ratings and trust influence health consumers’ physician selection intentions: An experimental study

Xi Han, Jia Tina Du, Tingting Zhang, Wenting Han, Qinghua Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Consumers’ growing reliance on the web information when choosing physicians has drawn attention to the need for more research into online physician ratings. This study conducted an experimental design to explore the roles of trust in different stages and three key online rating characteristics, including overall numerical ratings (high or general), review volume (high or low), and a comparison of the effect rating and attitude rating (higher or lower effect rating than attitude rating), in influencing health consumers’ choices. Results suggested that the overall numerical rating and review volume were significantly and positively correlated with the physician selection intention. Perceived physician trustworthiness completely mediated the effect of the review volume on consumer intentions, while initial trust in online physician ratings produced a moderating effect. The comparison of sub-dimension rating scores induces consumers’ regulatory focus and further moderated the relationship between overall rating score and consumers’ selection intentions, as well as the relationship between perceived physician trustworthiness and consumers’ selection intentions. Implications, limitations and future research directions are also discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101631
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalTelematics and Informatics
Volume62
Early online dateApr 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021

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