Exploring the service quality in the e-commerce context: a triadic view

Yong Lin, Jing Luo, Shuqing Cai, Shihua Ma, Ke Rong

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The purpose of this paper is to explore the quality factors influencing customer satisfaction in the electronic commerce (e-commerce) context using a triadic view of customer-e-retailer-third-party logistics provider, and to investigate the impacts of service quality on customer satisfaction and loyalty in the e-retailing supply chain.

A literature review is used to determine the conceptual model and develop the measurement scales. Data are collected through a web survey mainly conducted in China. Structural equation modeling is used to analyze the collected data and test the research hypotheses.

The results verify the proposed service quality framework, consisting of two dimensions (electronic service (e-service) quality and logistics service quality), in the e-commerce context. The results indicate that e-service quality and logistics service quality are strongly linked to customer satisfaction; that is, with e-service and logistics service, respectively. e-Service quality positively impacts customer satisfaction with logistics services, but logistics service quality negatively impacts customer satisfaction with e-services. Moreover, customer satisfaction with e-services is positively associated with customer loyalty for both e-services and logistics services. However, customer satisfaction with logistics services has no direct impact on related customer loyalty, and negatively impacts customer loyalty with e-services.

Research limitations/implications
The survey focusses only on China; future data should verify whether different cultural backgrounds will impact the research results.

Practical implications
The results show that e-retailers should not only focus on e-service quality, but also logistics service quality, which is critical to the success of e-commerce.

A two-dimensional (e-service and logistics) service quality framework is proposed and empirically assessed in the context of the e-retailing supply chain. These impacts of the path of service quality on customer satisfaction and loyalty are highlighted.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-415
JournalIndustrial Management & Data Systems
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 11 Apr 2016


  • customer satisfaction
  • service quality
  • supply chain
  • e-tailing
  • e-service
  • logistics service


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