Perceptions of Download Delays: Relation to Actual Waits, Web Site Abandoning, and Stage of Delay

Abstract: An experiment investigates how slow downloads of shopping Web sites are perceived by online consumers, and how download delays relate to Web site abandoning and stage of delay. Results show a complex, nonlinear relationship between actual and perceived download waiting, where perceptions level off after a threshold is reached. Furthermore, perceptions of download waiting are found to be more reliable than actual waits in predicting Web site abandoning. Finally, delays near the start of the download are perceived as longer than later in the process, and time pressure worsens the effect of download waiting at earlier stages of delay.    

First Author:   Pratibha A. Dabholkar  



Source: The Service Industries Journal, 2008, 28 (10), 1415-1429.

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