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E-commerce's future is in creating 'swift guanxi,' or personal and social rapport
phys.org, 14 Jun 2013
online marketplaces can create the sense of personal and social relationships between buyers and sellers, termed "swift guanxi" in China, to facilitate loyalty, interactivity and repeat transactions
Guanxi is a Chinese concept "broadly defined as a close and pervasive interpersonal relationship" and "based on high-quality social interactions and the reciprocal exchange of mutual benefits" (Ou, Pavlou and Davison)
Communication before a transaction of a few dollars could take more than 45 minutes; this is in stark contrast to American marketplace expectations.
"This study validates this warning by showing the ability of social technologies to transform online marketplaces from impersonal transactions among strangers to personal relationships among virtual friends," Pavlou said. "The future of electronic commerce lies in personal relationships virtually enabled by social technologies."
"Swift Guanxi in Online Marketplaces: The Role of Computer-Mediated-Communication Technologies," MIS Quarterly
Professor Paul A. Pavlou, Temple University Fox School of Business; Carol Xiaojuan Ou, Tilburg University; Robert M. Davison, City University of Hong Kong