Background and Rationale
Wilson (1981 cited in Wilson, 1997) indicated a general model of information behaviors which could explain “information behavior” for help all disciplines or areas or subjects to explore “information behaviors”. Meanwhile, Wilson advanced a model circumstances which rise to information-seeking behaviors is a part of information behaviors. This model shows some barriers between information need and information-seeking behaviors, serval elements such as personal, role related and environmental are shown.
Burnett (cited in Huang et al., 2013) gave a term ‘non-interactive’ to describe information-seeking behavior, in this he mentioned users only played a role like “readers” or “listeners” who only receive information while do not delivery or sharing information to any other individuals or organizations.While Mokros and Aakhus (2000 cited in Huang et., 2013) coined a term “engagement practice” by illustrating that consumers will exchange their informationwith related person (e.g. their friends or other consumers) before they make purchasing decision (Huang et. al).
Guo and Jaafar’s (2011) reported a series of statistics to show the increasing number of online shopping users and the huge online shopping market in China. They also mentioned the giant in Chinese online shopping market, Taobao, a banner and the biggest C2C company which holds more than 70 percent market in China (Li et al., 2008), could be a commendable case to research. The reason is, as a C2C business platform, consumers could not avoidto reada large amount virtual context about products which would come from descriptions of sellers or comments of other consumers.
As a necessity, clothing is the most common product category of online shops (Hansen and Jensen, 2009). He also indicated that clothing purchasing could only be decided by consumers’experience. There are several variables could influence customers’ decision making such as the expense and quality of commodities as well as the fit size or flavors of consumers. For this kind of products, consumers need to guarantee more risky than offline shopping even before they seeking more information about the products to reduce risky.
In Wilson’s (1997) paper, there are numerous authors (Connell & Crawford, 1988;Slevin, et al.,1988;Connell & Crawford, 1988;Feick et al.,1986 cited in Wilson, 1997) indicated that gender and age played a significant role on effecting information seeking behaviors. As a case of health care information seeking behavior, women receiving more nutrition information on food labels by concerning their children.
By embracing the evidence above, clothing category could contribute amount of profits to Taobao.com. Whilst by using the search engine of Taobao.com, the author found that 8 of 11 top hottest searched key words are relevant to clothing which attracts author’s attention because there must be huge number of information seeking behaviors in this category of Taobao.com. Additionally, what makes the author to the gender variable is 3 of these 8 key words are generally relevant to women (e.g. one-piece dress, fashionable women’s shoes and skirt), besides this, 2 of 8 is relevant to men and other three is neutral. There no articles accessed to the relationship between demographic issues and information seeking behaviors. As a student of information management, proof above motivated the author to do this research to fill this gap.
Research Aims and Objectives
The aim of this article is to research the consumers of Taobao.com, their gender and sex will influence their information behaviors when they search the information in the clothing category. Thus, this paper could highlight some points to Taobao.com to improve their search engine.By knowing how gender and sex influence their consumers’ information seeking behavior, Taobao.com could easily help users go cross their barriers, thus, to motivate consumers and increase efficiency of the search engine.
- How does gender influence consumers information seeking behavior in clothing category of Taobao.com
To explore the relationship between consumers gender and information seeking behavior in clothing category of Taobao.com
- How does age influence consumers information seeking behavior in clothing category of Taobao.com
To define the relationship between consumers age and information seeking behavior in clothing category of Taobao.com
Why the questioned has been proposed
By review a variety of articles, there are many research mentioned the impact from gender and age on their seeking information behavior, however, most of them focus on different area such as health and food(Hupfer and Deltor, 2006; Manierre, 2015 Spence, 2006).Meanwhile some researches are focused on the Taobao and the C2C market in China. Clothing, as the most popular online purchasing product, could be easy to access. The author thought it could be a knowledge gap when no survey to show the relationship between demographic and consumers information seeking behavior in clothing of Taobao.
Information seeking behavior
Firstly, by agree with Weiler’s (2005) view of information seeking behavior: even there are huge work has been done with it, what people know is just a tip of iceberg.
Wilson (2000)defines information-seeking behavior as the purposive seekingfor information as a consequence of a need tosatisfy some goal.Based on this definition and his (1981) model of information behavior, the header or starter is information need which is not doubtable.
After information users have their need for information, what could not be ignored is whether users ultimately sharing or using the information, information seeking behavior played a role which could not be bypassed. Moreover, moving onto the model of information seeking behavior mentioned above, there are three main parts of this model: the information need (the goal of information by users) and barriers (issues will influence users on their seeking behavior)……….