The purpose of this paper is to focus on failures in online flash sales (OFS) and to explore why consumers participate in an OFS even after experiencing service failure. It also examines the role of deal proneness, attribution, and emotions.
Using a mixed method approach to gain insights into this relatively unexplored phenomenon of OFS, this research uses netnography followed by a survey study.
The findings show that deal-prone customers tend to ignore service failures during OFS and re-participate in the future. In the context of OFS, failures attributed to internal locus of attribution (LOA) also have a negative effect on re-participation compared with failures attributed to external LOA. Furthermore, there is a three-way interaction among deal proneness, LOA, and past emotions. The results show that negative past emotions further exacerbate the impact of attribution on the link between deal proneness and re-participation.
In contrast with prior research, the paper shows that consumers participate even after service failure. The proposed difference is between customers who experience different LOA and past emotions offers insights into their behavior after service failure in a new context of an online/electronic commerce event – flash sales. This paper specifically explores the role of internal LOA and finds that it has a more negative impact than external LOA on re-participation.