The impact of geographic context on e-shopping behavior

Fang Ren, Mei Po Kwan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent studies have examined what factors affect the adoption of e-shopping (electronic shopping why people adopt e-shopping, and what changes in activity-travel patterns will occur as a response to e-shopping. Very few studies to date, however, have investigated the impact of geographic context on people's e-shopping behavior. This study reexamines the explanatory factors that are related to people's e-shopping patterns through a study of the Columbus Metropolitan Area, OH. It focuses on the effect of accessibility to local shops and the residential context on the adoption of e-shopping and the frequency of buying online. Using an activity - Internet diary dataset, the results suggest that people with lower levels of accessibility to local shopping opportunities are more likely to engage in e-shopping, since the Internet enhances the efficiency of shopping by providing more product information and by eliminating the need of travel in the physical world. Further, people who live in areas with a white majority are more likely to adopt e-shopping. The magnitude of the impact of these context factors on e-shopping, however, is quite small.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)262-278
Number of pages17
JournalEnvironment and Planning B: Planning and Design
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science(all)


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