Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Textiles, Apparel Design, and Merchandising

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

The demand for heated jackets is anticipated to be fuelled by frequent temperature drops, severe winter weather, and increasing outdoor activities. Electrically heated jackets (EHJ) are primarily marketed through online distribution channels and expansion of online sales channels is expected to boost the global market. Consumers are increasingly relying on online reviews from other consumers to help them decide what to buy. Businesses also actively monitor and manage their online reviews to build trust in their brand and make it more likely that customers will buy. Traditional approaches for assessing customer behavior, such as market research surveys and focus groups, are time- and resource-intensive. However, examining internet reviews enables researchers to rapidly uncover users' experiences with a product or service. The sheer volume of online evaluations makes them difficult to evaluate and distill into significant themes, yet they are essential for understanding customer behavior.

The purpose of this research is to employ an automated identification of emergent issues in consumers' use of EHJ under the framework of the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT2) and Functional, Expressive, Aesthetic (FEA) theory. For this purpose, 17,069 online reviews were collected and analyzed using a text mining technique based on sentiment analysis and Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA). The sentiment and latent theme in the use of EHJ narratives and their accompanying patterns are the focus of the suggested technique. Findings showed that nearly 75% of all reviews were favorable, while only a small percentage of consumers reported their dissatisfaction with the product. The subjectivity score of a substantially higher proportion of reviews was more than 0.5, referring to users' subjective evaluations and opinions rather than unreliable product facts. This study used content analysis to determine a total of 22 distinct but related topics or subjects to EHJ usage and then topics were grouped under five broad themes following the theoretical frameworks. Thematic analysis revealed that the EHJ's usefulness, fit, comfort, mobility, hedonic motivation, facilitating conditions, and effort expectancy were the most often mentioned themes. Consumers have also expressed their concerns about the short lifespan of the battery and the improper fit of the product. In light of the outcomes of the study, both theoretical and practical implications were discussed.

Date

8-25-2022

Committee Chair

Xia, Sibei

Available for download on Thursday, August 24, 2023

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