The impact of surfer/seeker mode on the effectiveness of website characteristics

Andrea J.S. Stanaland and Juliana Tan

Redford University

Introduction

The internet has long been identified as a unique advertising medium possessing such characteristics as multimedia capacity, audience selectivity, constant message delivery and interactivity (Ju-Pak 1999; Wolin et al. 2002). Described as the ‘largest communication network ever created by humans’, the internet is now viewed as an essential element of the advertising media mix (Sohn & Jee 2005, p. 425). Prior research has also emphasised the importance of an advertiser’s website as a marketing communication tool (Berthon et al. 1996a, 1996b) as well as the role of the website as the actual or target ad (Hoffman & Novak 1996; Ju-Pak 1999; Rodgers & Thorson 2000; Dahlen & Bergendahl 2001; Hwang et al. 2003). Creating commercial websites that engage consumers so that important marketing objectives – extended visit durations, repeat visits, positive consumer attitudes and online purchase – may be achieved, has thus been considered a critical task (Bezjian-Avery et al. 1998; Novak et al. 2000).