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Abstract

n an attempt to better understand the important role of visual information in eWOM, this paper aims to examine the gap between travel-related information search and diffusion by online users. Descriptive analysis is used to examine the types of information combination that are perceived as powerful and influential by potential travelers and contributed by experience travelers. Several t-tests and one-way A OVA are also conducted to investigate various differences (e.g., individual preference for information combination, information combination selection for each of eWOM diffusion venues). The survey result finds that, as people rely more on Internet information for their future travel, potential travelers perceive information with textual and visual information (i.e., photos and videos) in conjunction more powerful and influential for their travel motivation formation than text-only information. On the other hand, while text and photo combined information ranks still high in their information contribution, substantial rate of experienced travelers tends to contribute text-only information as well. The reasons for this gap and individual differences behind their information choices are examined. Some managerial suggestions for each eWOM diffusion venue are also suggested.

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Textual and Visual Information in Ewom: A Gap between Information Search and Diffusion

n an attempt to better understand the important role of visual information in eWOM, this paper aims to examine the gap between travel-related information search and diffusion by online users. Descriptive analysis is used to examine the types of information combination that are perceived as powerful and influential by potential travelers and contributed by experience travelers. Several t-tests and one-way A OVA are also conducted to investigate various differences (e.g., individual preference for information combination, information combination selection for each of eWOM diffusion venues). The survey result finds that, as people rely more on Internet information for their future travel, potential travelers perceive information with textual and visual information (i.e., photos and videos) in conjunction more powerful and influential for their travel motivation formation than text-only information. On the other hand, while text and photo combined information ranks still high in their information contribution, substantial rate of experienced travelers tends to contribute text-only information as well. The reasons for this gap and individual differences behind their information choices are examined. Some managerial suggestions for each eWOM diffusion venue are also suggested.