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Influence of Social Media on Consumer Perception

towards online Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

Term Report

Group

Supervised by:

Maam Saima Hussain

Section

MBA 1 I- E

Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science & Technology (SZABIST)

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Acknowledgement

We would like to acknowledge the continuous support of our course facilitator Miss Saima
Hussain for making this study interesting and knowledgeable.
Her supervision and research knowledge allowed us to complete this independent study in a
professional manner. Her constant support and advice led us to successfully conduct our research
and report our findings in a professional manner.

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Abstract
This research aims to examine the influence of social media on consumer perception towards
online small and medium enterprises. Social media is one of the fastest growing networks and is
becoming a major tool of marketing for all businesses. Consumer perception is important
towards all retailers on how they see a specific enterprise and how social media affects their
perception. Our framework was developed through four attributes, convenience, trust,
information and customer relationship management and it was tested against consumer
perception of SMEs. Data was collected through survey (questionnaires) and focus groups. The
respondents of the survey and Focus group belonged to the age group of 18-40 years and were
approached by using convenience sampling. Data was collected from 384 respondents and all
the respondents belonged to Karachi, Pakistan. The study was descriptive in nature where
interpretivisim and positivism philosophy was used. Also mix-method was used to analyze the
information which was gathered from our sample size. The findings of the study suggested that
all four variables trust, information, convenience and customer relationship management have a
significant effect on consumer perception towards SMEs.

Keywords Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), Social Media, Consumer Perception,
Impact, Stakeholders

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Contents
Chapter: 1 Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 6
1.1 Background ......................................................................................................................................... 6
1.2 The problem ........................................................................................................................................ 9
1.3 Purpose ............................................................................................................................................... 9
1.4 Research Questions ............................................................................................................................ 9
1.5 Research Objective ............................................................................................................................. 9
1.6 Justification ....................................................................................................................................... 10
1.7 Limitations......................................................................................................................................... 11
1.8 Scope ................................................................................................................................................. 11
1.9 Definition of Key Terms..................................................................................................................... 11
Chapter 2 Literature Review: ................................................................................................................... 12
2.1 Social Media ..................................................................................................................................... 12
2.2 Use of Social Media for Business Purposes...................................................................................... 12
2.3 Consumers perspective ..................................................................................................................... 13
2.3.1 CRM........................................................................................................................................... 13
2.3.2 Convenience ............................................................................................................................... 14
2.3.3 Trust ........................................................................................................................................... 14
2.3.4 Information ................................................................................................................................ 14
2.4 Business Perspective ......................................................................................................................... 14
2.4.1 Customer relationship Management .......................................................................................... 14
2.4.2 Convenience ............................................................................................................................... 15
2.4.3 Trust ........................................................................................................................................... 15
2.4.4 Information ................................................................................................................................ 15
2.5 Theoretical Framework: .................................................................................................................... 16
2.6 Research Gap .................................................................................................................................... 18
Chapter summary................................................................................................................................ 18
Chapter 3 Research Methodology ........................................................................................................... 20
3.1 Research Design ................................................................................................................................ 20
3.2 Procedure .......................................................................................................................................... 20
3.3 Population ......................................................................................................................................... 20
3.4 Sample and Sampling Method .......................................................................................................... 21
3.5 Measurement / Instrument Selection .............................................................................................. 21

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3.6 Variables............................................................................................................................................ 22
3.7 Hypothesis......................................................................................................................................... 23
3.8 Plan of Analysis: ................................................................................................................................ 23
3. 9 Software employed .......................................................................................................................... 24
3.10 Validity and reliability ..................................................................................................................... 24
Chapter 4: Analysis...................................................................................................................................... 24
4.0 Quantitative Analysis ........................................................................................................................ 24
4.1 Reliability........................................................................................................................................... 25
4.2 Demographic analysis: ...................................................................................................................... 25
4.3 Cross tabulation: ............................................................................................................................... 26
4.4 Descriptive ........................................................................................................................................ 28
4.5 Correlation ........................................................................................................................................ 28
4.6 Regression ......................................................................................................................................... 30
4.7 ANOVA/T-test ................................................................................................................................... 31
4.8 Qualitative Analysis ........................................................................................................................ 31
4.9 Categories ......................................................................................................................................... 31
4.10 Coding ............................................................................................................................................. 32
4.10.1 Convenient ............................................................................................................................... 32
4.10.2 Company Image ....................................................................................................................... 32
4.10.3 Ease of Information.................................................................................................................. 33
4.10.4 Ease of Availability ................................................................................................................... 33
4.11 Discussion........................................................................................................................................ 33
5 Conclusion: ............................................................................................................................................... 34
6 Recommendations: .................................................................................................................................. 35
Chapter 7 - References................................................................................................................................ 36
References ................................................................................................................................................... 36
Chapter 8 Appendix ................................................................................................................................. 39
Chapter 9 - Plagiarism Report..43

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Chapter: 1 Introduction

1.1 Background
Internet is not only used as a source of information anymore but now as a medium for online
shopping as well. Ernst & Young conducted a study in 1998 which helped in identifying that there
are over 39 million individuals who shop online in 1998 (Ernst &Young). With the growing use
of internet,individuals are now looking at it in a more commercial way (Hennig-Thurau et al.,
2004). With time we can clearly see that it has become common in work place and also become
the only source of communication. Internet has proved to be the backbone of any industry and now
it isenabling companies to conduct business from anywhere at any time at the most cost effective
way (Chen et al, 2008). Internet has changed the way people do business or even how they spend
their leisure time. People are now very dependent on technology and with the increasing
globalization, connectivity is they to success for any business. Internet is not only limited to the
personal computers these days, as with the help of cell phones people now are connected
everywhere and at anytime.

In the current environment where technology prevails, businesses want to keep up to date and keep
on changing otherwise they might become obsolete, most business now include social media as a
way to market its products as it has become an important tool for promotion. (Abu Bashar, Irshad
Ahmed and Mohammad Wasiq, 2012). It is essential for every company to be present on social
media and reach out to its potential customers, and it can do that in the most cost effective and
reliable way, as social media is considered to be one of the ways to be do mass communication.
With time now we have observed that social media has brought about a change in how marketers
and users communicate. It is now very easy for a company or a user to communicate with each
other through the use of social media.People can now influence each other by reviewing the
product or influencing some ones decision about the product, and this turns out to be very effective
and reliable when it comes from the source directly, proving to be word of mouth marketing for
the company, and with time its organic effects can turn out to become very profitable for any
company. (Hennig-Thurau et al., 2004)

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The usage of internet is growing in Pakistan, and one of the major factor which helps in this growth
is the use of smart phones, as now companies are penetrating in to the lower price bands and
introducing cheaper phones with more capabilities. Internet is now easily accessible for everyone
and has now become a main stream communication medium for small and medium size enterprises
(SME). As small and medium size enterprises are usually new startups or are local firms, they do
not have the muscle to take the costly route of ATL communication which can have heavy impacts
on their profitability, therefore with the help of this medium, people can reach out to a larger
magnitude with very less amount of investment. People are now opening up their own businesses
and marketing themselves through social media as its cheaper as compared to other forms of
marketing but like any other product purchases, the success mainly depends on user satisfaction
and other such factors which would directly or indirectly affect customers behavior online as
discussed by Chen and Chou (2011). Social media has proved to be one of the most efficient and
the most effective way to market a product and reach out to your customers, along with active
interaction between the firm and the consumer. Through researches and past trends we can clearly
notice that in the last few years, there has been a great effect of the companies on the online
networks, because nowadays social media websites are acting as a platform where the potential
consumers and companies can come together and engage with each other which helps the
companies build relationships and alongside helps the consumer gain confidence on the product
that it want to buy or consume. (Mersey, et al., 2010)

These days people are using several different online platforms to communicate and eradicate the
barriers with the use of podcasts, social networks, and blogs. These mediums are considered highly
reliable by any consumer who want to buy a product, as he or she is getting firsthand information
from another user / consumer. Platform like these are there for users to share their ideas and
experience about the product, service or a brand. (Kozinets, 2002)

The uniqueness & commonness of this industry has gained much popularity among both, the
customers and companies. It has also changed the ways how people think and perceive about any
product or service. Today social marketing/ digital marketing is an integral part of any companys
marketing department, as it has revolutionized the practices like promotion and branding (Hanna,
Rohn and Crittenden, 2011). It has also made a mark on the consumers who want to buy products
online, as they have made the product available online as well as made the information regarding

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it so common and easy that the consumer is now turning to social media for a one stop solution.
Post-purchase reactions such as dissatisfaction/ satisfaction is also another area where the
marketers are making the most out of, the positives here are used to amplify the reach and create
a positive buzz for its prospect consumers (Mangold and Faulds, 2009).

Communication of brand / company and users help create a favorable or less favorable image of
other users who read information posted and consider them in the information or purchase.
Interactivity with target brand in social media is perceived differently by consumers depending on
the message they convey (Shin, 2008).

Social media includes social networks which can be defined as a website which brings together
millions of users from around the world on a website with similar interests for e.g. YouTube,
Twitter, Facebook, these social media websites are popular amongst all age groups and are used
as a form for marketing by companies and individuals (Sin, et al., 2012).Through these social
media websites, organizations are becoming more connected with their customers, Facebook has
more than 600 million daily users with over 1.5 million pages (Facebook 2013) whereas on Twitter
approximately 500 million tweets are sent in a day (Tweeter 2012).Studies which have been
conducted on the use of Facebook among SMEs found that Facebook is used for various goals of
the organization such as marketing, communication, sales, advertising, innovation, problem
resolution, customer service, human resources, information technology, driving cultural change
(Bhanot,2012), making it an important tool for SME's and through this they can gauge a
consumers perception and influence of others towards their product/service. Due to the advantages
that are attached with the whole network of social media and the service model which helps in
connecting companies directly to end-consumers, in a way which is cost effective and timely, it
has been noticed that over the period of these years since social media has taken its place, the
consumers perception and buying behavior of the consumers has brought the industry to realize
that social media is something that is here to stay and also something which will most probably
be the future of every industry. (Williams and Cothrell, 2000)(Kaplan and Haenlein, 2010).

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1.2 The problem
In the current environment we are witnessing people using social media to promote their products,
with the introduction of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, we are getting to see alot of people
opening up their own businesses and using it as a major tool to market their business. Large
organizations as well are changing their company strategies and focusing on social media as
compared to traditional marketing. They try to change a consumers perception about the product
or service as consumers user as a platform to voice their opinion about companies which might be
positive or negative. Once a user does that it might influence the opinion and perception of others
users as wellon social media due to which it has to be seen if social media actually influences a
users perception regarding an SME who are using it to promote their products and service.

1.3 Purpose
The purpose of our study was to find out if social media actually influences a consumers
perception regarding small and medium enterprises that use social media as way to promote
themselves and influence users to buy their product/service.

1.4Research Questions
1. Is it convenient to purchase products from online mediums?

2. Do users actually believe the information shared on social media?

3. Do users trust social media as compared to other forms of marketing?

4. Does customer relationship management form a perception of customers when buying online?

5. What more factors does consumers have in mind and what insights can be gauged when a
person buys through social media?

1.5Research Objective
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The main objective of this study indicates the following:-

1.To investigate if people feel that purchasing from online is convenient.

2.To determine if users actually believe the information shared online.

3.To analyzeif people actually trust it more than other forms of marketing.

4.To analyze if customers relationship management form a perception when customers buy
online.

1.6Justification
Recently most entrepreneurs and partnership businesses are using social media as a form of
marketing tool and trying to influence consumers. This study analyzed the role of social media and
how it affected a consumers mindset and changed their perception regarding a company. This
study will help stake holders involved who are spending and focusing on social media, if it has
any benefits for them or should they rather focus on another medium of marketing. This study will
help identify which social media tools the company can use effectively if it influences consumer
perception.

StakeHolders (Direct and Related)

Direct stake holders are SME's who invest their time, money and resources in social media as they
want to earn revenue out of their business and tend to spend to increase their revenue. This will
help them to identify if they are actually investing in the right medium or do they need to change
their strategy and focus on something else. As no company wants to make a loss or not be effective
in the tools which they use, SME's main aim is to grow and survive the market conditions as
competition is fierce and they don't have much financial backing as they have limited budgets their
focus should be on the right medium.

The related stakeholders of this study are users of social media, as they want the best of each
product and they should realize what a company/brand has to offer.They would want to know if
social media actually changes their perception about a product but in a positive or negative way.
Through this they will be able to know that and use it to their advantage when they are thinking of
purchasing a product/service from a SME.

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1.7Limitations
1. Time and Resources constraint, we only had 2 months to carry out a research and also
lacked financial resources to carry out a more thorough research.
2. The survey was carried out mainly in Karachi, Pakistan and the study will only be
applicable to Pakistani market.
3. As we only conducted the study in Karachi, we would have to be careful to generalize it
on the whole population as people think differently in different areas.

1.8Scope
1. This study showedthe effects of social media on consumers perception in Pakistan.

2. The study mainly focused only on those people who have an internet connection and are
directly associated with SMEs through one of the social media platforms but mainly
Facebook as its the most widely used platform for buying purposes.

1.9 Definition of Key Terms


Small and Medium EnterprisesOrganizations which employ more than 10 people but under
250 people are known as SMEs.

Social MediaWebsites which allow users to develop create and share information/data or to use
it for social networking.

Consumer Perception It is a persons impression about a company, it is affected by media,


reviews, marketing and social media.

Stakeholders These are people, groups or organizations which are directly or indirectly
involved in an organization and are affected by its policies and strategy.

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Chapter 2 Literature Review:

2.1 Social Media


The term social media is derived from two different ideologies, firstly the word social comes up
which basically defines the interactivity of a person with its surroundings. Then the term media
comes up, which denotes the medium of communications. Thus, this term social media is defined
as a type of media through which people can commute socially. In social media every person is a
publisher and can talk about whatever they like and dislike. (Safko, L. & Brake, D. K. 2009) Social
media is a kind of a shared connection for individuals where they have openness to connect with
others and with the world through a bounded system. The main forms of social media includes
social networks such as Facebook, MySpaceetc, Blogs, Communities etc.(Mayfield, 2008)
Charlene Li (2010) claimed through his research that the best form of social media for networking
according to the research is Facebook. Social media acts as a great tool for companies to interact
with their audience and with those people who are actually interested in their product. It gives
firms to establish their brand and nourish it accordingly. In addition to this, the overall concept of
interacting & communicating is so much easier that many firms are inclining to move in the area
of social media. (Maria Vernuccio,2014). In addition to the fact that businesses can communicate
with their customers through social media, it is possible for customers to communicate with other
customers as well through social media.(Mangold et al.2009) Alexa (2010) reported that digital
media has given a chance to customers and entrepreneurs to promote & distribute their offers
through Ebay, Amazon, YouTube, Wikipedia, MySpace, Twitter, Trip advisor& Facebook. The
use of computers has shifted to smartphones & portable computers. Top 15 websites have more
than 11 percent global traffic which are based on user-generated content. Facebook, MySpace,
YouTube, Wikipedia, and Twitter among Top 15 websites viewed. Printed newspapers and
magazine are facing a major crisis as consumers are moving towards digital media (Edgecliffe-
Johnson 2008).

2.2 Use of Social Media for Business Purposes

SixDegrees.com was the first social media website which was launched in 1997 but social media
advanced through the launch of Facebook and MySpace in 2003 and by 2008 it had become a
global phenomenon (Boyd and Ellison, 2008). Initially social media was used as a tool to connect
friends and for them to communicate but now it has been adopted as a business tool (Bughin and
Manyika, 2007).Businesses are now on social media platforms and using it as a tool to assist them
in their process such as in marketing, customer relations management, (Kim et al, 2010; Harris
and Rae, 2009b; Hawn, 2009), business networking both inside (Kim et al, 2010; Leader-Chive
et al, 2008; Misner et al, 2009) and outside (Misner et al, 2009; Kim et al, 2010) the company and
recruitment (Millard, 2007).

With the advancement of the internet and social media networks businesses and individuals are
now using social media to conduct their business and customers are now more more engaged

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through social media and businesses should take advantage of this and respond to consumers
through social media only, (See Siew Sin, Khalil MdNor, Ameen M Al-Agaga, 2012). As stated
by Laroche et al (2012) brand managers should use Facebook as part of their marketing strategy.
Managers should see social media as an essential part of the internet and many users use it daily.
Through social media organizations interact and engage with potential customers and it leads to
better customer relationships (Amichai-Hamburger, 2008). Social media is cannot only be used
for marketing but also to build relationships with other businesses/professionals which can lead to
increase business and better communication (Richard Derham, Paul Cragg, SussieMorrish, 2011)

A study was conducted amongst SME managers in USA, UK, Australia and India and the
conclusion was that a firms innovativeness, age and geographic location have a significant impact
on Twitter adoption Wamba and Carter, 2013) where as Zeiller and Schauer (2011) concluded that
SMEs will only use social media only if these platforms provide relevant and up to date content.As
recognized by Chua et al (2009) and Parker and Castleman (2007), they discussed that SMEs are
not the same but are different in many ways from each other in terms of different style of
management, age, educational level, attitude towards E-Business, business goals etc. These factors
make each SME different from the other and some social media tools would beneficial for one
SME such as e.g. blogs whereas for another it wouldnt be, also SMEs are usually not driven by
profits, growth or competitive advantage but more by family values, they tend to keep true to their
values and want to have a personal connection or identity with their business. It was stated by
Harris et al (2008) that SMEs struggle to adopt technology due to their lack of resources as
compared to large businesses but the internet has largely reduced the costs of marketing as
compared to traditional.

2.3 Consumers perspective

2.3.1 CRM

Before the advent of social media, firms exercised complete control over the communication
messages that they diffused to the customers and the duration of the customers exposure to them.
However, in the age of the social media, once a message has been delivered to the customer, the
firm no longer has any control over it and the message can be received by numerous customers
who can comment, discuss and share it with others as stated by Mangold &Faulds,(2009). It was
further elaborated by Manish Parihar (Jan 2012) in his study that although the traditional touch
points with the customer will stay around, the social media has revolutionalized the concept of
customer relationship management as now customers and the firm have increased interaction
online.

MeghaPatil (2011) states that customers are important for the firm as its current profit and future
growth depend on it. Customer relationship management is basically the relationship between the
firm and customer which involves two way communication and interaction. The aim of CRM is to
make this relationship mutually beneficial and profitable. These days the focus of the firms is to

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integrate social media with their CRM strategies in order to get closer to them and gain customer
insights. However, integrating social media in CRM is also challenging. Hoards of information
are generated online and in order to be effective, companies have to monitor them and use them
accordingly.

2.3.2 Convenience

Shopping convenience has been one of the most important factors in making customers adopt
online mediums for shopping (Beaucamp and Ponder, 2010). Companies are now increasingly
trying to take advantage of this insight by ensuring the speed and ease of use in the online shopping
experience for their customers. In todays fast paced lifestyle, the customer is always looking to
save time and online shopping either through social media or websites is gaining popularity in
contrast to shopping from traditional bricks and mortar stores.

2.3.3 Trust

Trust in the context of online purchases from social media is defined as the belief of the user
regarding the reliability, credibility and accuracy of the information obtained from Facebook and
it is an important factor that influences a consumers perception towards a brand (Chai et al., 2011).
These days SMEs post a lot of information about their brand, products and services online.
Marketing and promotional material is also posted online. However, the information will only
benefit them if the customer perceives it as relevant and trustworthy.

2.3.4 Information

Kateranttanakul (2002) presents the view in his study that that the content placed by a company
online has a strong association with customer satisfaction and the customers overall perception
of the brand. The reliability of the information provided affects the consumers attitude towards
the brand.

In addition, Christy & Matthew (2005) identified that the quality of the information provided by
the brand online had a significant influence on the consumers level of satisfaction. The content
format, accuracy and quality increased the level of trust and allowed the consumer to be happy
with the online store.

2.4 Business Perspective

2.4.1 Customer relationship Management

As technology is growing significantly the impact on Customer Relationship Management (CRM)


is having a positive impact on businesses. Innovation of technology of cloud computing and web-
based technology has been adopted by researchers to improve business & sales performance by

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building strong relations with customers (Hunter and Perreault, 2006; Jelinek, Ahearne, Mathieu,
and Schillewaert, 2006). To have a competitive advantage over any competitor technology is
playing a vital role. It not only improves the business processes but enhances the customer
relationship (Bharadwaj, Varadarajan , and Fahy, 1993). For establishing a new business CRM
technology gives a chance to communicate well to their clients for more opportunities (Ahearne,
Jelinek, and Rapp, 2005).

The information gathered from the interaction & conversation with the client on Social media can
be utilized to enhance the firms CRM system (Rodriguez, Peterson, and Krishnan, 2012, pg. 378).

2.4.2 Convenience

Convenience defined as time-buying or time saving (Douglas 1976; Strober and Weinberg 1977;
Strober and Weinberg 1980; Schaninger and Allen 1981; Reilly 1982). Convenience goods are
easily purchased & accessible at stores (Copeland, 1923). Convenience is considered as integral
factor in consumption and considers pycho-behavioral & economic and temporal terms (Etgar
(1978); Feldman and (Hornik,1981); Hendrix (1984) and Nicosia and Mayer,1976).

For all internet users convenience is a very important construct (Papacharissi and Rubin ,2000).
The word convenience was indicated by enjoying the convenience of shopping on web
(Korgaonkar and Wolin, 1999). Equity are of three types value, relationship & brand (Lemon et
al., 2001). Value Equity is the customers objective based on perception of what is received (Vogel
et al., 2008). The key influences on value equity are convenience, price and quality (Lemon et al.,
2001). Koetal (2005) said convenience is a motivational factor for interactive advertising.

2.4.3 Trust

Trust plays a vital role in online transactions for both the consumer and the business. Cybercrime
is increasing day by day. Companies' perception of online trust has steadily evolved. Companies
have developed number of rules and procedures to protect itself from assailant that includes
privacy, security, reliability and credibility of the users (Shankar, Venkatesh, Glen L. Urban, and
Fareena Sultan, 2002). Furthermore, trust online spans the end-to-end aspects of e-business rather
than being just based on the electronic storefront. There is a possibility that consumers may not
trust company generated advertisement within social media. According to Red Bridge Marketing
(2008), regarding products and services, 78 percent of global consumers believe and trust the
suggestions of other people over any other data. Similarly businesses want take precautions before
moving to the final phase of the transaction.

2.4.4 Information

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In this modern age, internet has opened doors to vast number of gates to different platforms. One
of them is information. We have numerous number of web (2.0) based search engines the enables
us to explore the unbounded knowledge store on the internet. Moreover, today we have social
media platform where its mass number of users create, modify and share information on the
internet. Business refer to material present on social media as consumer generated media (CGM).
Bhanot, S. (2012). Knowledge on the social media is useful to both, for the consumer and for the
company. Customers perceive this information as more reliable than straightforward business
communication. Hence, peer opinion becomes a major influence on buying behavior
(Constantinides, Amo, and Romero 2010). Companies uses this type of data to plan its decisions.
There are many social media platforms that sell their users data to the interested companies. Which
then analyses the data to find relevant information, which would influence their future decision
making? The companies can find the highs and lows of todays dynamic market. Moreover, it is
possible to communicate with hundreds of thousands of people about a product and the company
providing that product. This way, the effect of communication from consumer to consumer is
broadened immensely in the marketplace (Mangold and Faulds 2009, 357).

2.5 Theoretical Framework:


Past researches have talked about this topic in great detail and factored in all the factors that affect
the whole process of consumer purchase decision. For the past 25 years, the consumer behavior
has evolved immensely and shown a great change in the consumer buying patterns, and the reasons
of change have been evident for the past generations. (Kar, 2010). Social media has played a great
role in changing the consumer buying patterns and decision making process as it evolves around
certain variables which effect the consumers decision, that are; convenience, customer relationship
management, information available and trust factor. These factors are discussed and emphasized
upon in the previous researches which show that each one of them plays a significant role in the
decision making process of the consumer.

The research by Palmer (1996) quantified that people need to connect with the brand and the people
related to it, when they are buying a high involvement product. The element of developing a brand
and maintaining a relationship between its consumers is very essential to ensure that the consumer
has a positive image of the brand in his/her mind. Even for strengthening its loyalty a brand has to
maintain a relationship and for that purpose SMEs have a strength in this department, due to the
size, they are more focused at their consumers and through social media they are always connected.
Consumers use social networks in day to day life for multiple reasons and maintaining
relationships with friends and colleagues is one of them, this provides an edge to the companies
and organizations to connect with their potential customers and maintain a contact with them
through CRM. Establishing an interpersonal connectivity between online users of a social media
channel has positively affected the companies, and when talking about SMEs and their focused
approach it could be highly beneficial and cost effective for them to maintain contact with their
consumers for a positive lasting impact. (Utpal et al., 2004).

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The experience of shopping has always been a social for most of the people, and social media
allows consumers to meet and communicate with each other at an online medium where they can
discuss products & services, though the cultural aspects have an influence on consumers as well
while they make a purchase decision. (Pookulangaran et al., 2011) Social media along with
ecommerce aids the organizations to reach to more potential buyers, as it provides them with the
convenience factor. One of the major advantages of social media is that it connects the business to
the consumers in a way which is time bound and cost effective (Kaplan and Haenlein, 2010).

Previous researches state that the factor of trust also plays a very vital role in the perceptions of a
consumer about a product or service. We have noticed a decreased consumers confidence in
brands and an increasing in confidence and trust in the opinions of others through social media
medium. The credibility of the consumers is getting lesser by the day when it come s to brand
messages communicated via TV commercials and are see what others say or prefer via social
media and consumer opinions online (Dellarocas, 2003). Earlier researches have proved that even
a small amount of adverse information have created meaningful effect on the mind of the consumer
as he/she thinks more before buying a product which has a negative reviews of the customers,
therefore the element of trust is a key operator in consumers perspective towards a brand on social
media (Schlosser, 2005).

As far as information is considered, when we think about buying a product the first thing a person
does is that it gathers information or reviews about the product. Information has two types of
sources; external and internal information search. The internal search process highly requires a
consumers recall about a commodity, and the other type of search i.e. external search, includes
person to person communication, physical visits to stores, trial & error and finally the online social
media tool to connect (Kardes, et al, 2011). One of the salient feature of social media is its informal
means of communication which could be classified as communication with friends, family
members and co-workers. This interaction leads to discussions and opinions about products and
services pertaining to its information. Friends, family and peers connect with each other to ask the
quality of service at a certain restaurant or even the fabric of a dress that they bought (Solomon, et
al, 2010). This is also known as word-of-mouth or an engagement of consumers in positive or
negative communication of an outcome of dissatisfaction or satisfaction experiences. This person
to person communication relates to products, services, brands, and companies and what effect it
creates on a consumers buying decision (Evans, et al, 2009).

Various studies show researches that have been done on this subject. We can clearly see that the
factors that had been identified are clearly influential on the consumer buying behavior. The
conclusions which are drawn from the study "The New Consumer Study", that took place in 2009
by the Euro RSCG Worldwide; proves that a new potential customer has a very high confidence
in online content generated by his/her colleagues & friends, and therefore uses the majority of the
online methods to do research about a product before buying it in order to make the best purchase.
Word-Of-Mouth communication is cheapest, quickest and a reliable tool which people rely on
heavily. It provides them with great convenience as it is less time consuming, requires lesser
17
physical work and also proves to be cost effective due to no additional charges. Along with this
the factor of maintaining a CRM through also proves to be beneficial as the consumer forms a
bond of reliability with the brand when connected with it. (Dellarocas, 2003).

Through all this literature which we have identified, we will try to assess the relationship of all
these factors with Consumer perception through a quantitative analysis and would try to gain
further insights as to why people buy through social media from SMEs through a qualitative
analysis.

2.6 Research Gap


After going through the articles, the conclusion was that consumer perception of SMEs is affected
by trust of the medium, convenience, information available and customer relationship
management. Users consider those businesses more on social media which give out the right
information and who are seen as reliable and trustworthy and have a good reputation.

The result of the literature review showed a positive relationship between all the various variables,
researches on social media have been conducted in various countries and how it impacts them in
various ways and it has shown a positive relationship which is important and determines if the
consumer is going to buy from that SME or actually go offline to shop.

Chapter summary

18
After going through the literature review, we concluded that various factors affect a consumers
perception towards the SMEs but mostly researches have been done out of Pakistan. Our research
has been conducted in Karachi, Pakistan and it reveals the results on how consumer perception is
affected and influenced towards SMEs.

19
Chapter 3 Research Methodology

3.1 Research Design


The study made use of quantitative research methods as well as qualitative and the research design
that was used is descriptive.

The philosophy in our research proposed that based upon the positivist and interpretivism theory,
we deduced from the factors that if consumer perceptions tend to fluctuate depending on the size
of the SME, it affects their behavior online. We used a deductive approach for our study as the
underline variables had already been tested before on different theories and we found a relationship
between all the variables with respect to your consumer perception in the online SMEs industry.

We used the survey method as our strategy and went with the multiple mixed method as well as
used quantitative and qualitative methods for our longitudinal study and gathered our data over a
due course of time.

We collected our data from respondents and got our questionnaires filled out and conducted focus
groups from our target audience.

3.2 Procedure
This study was conducted by assessing the consumer perception towards online shopping through
a questionnaire and focus group. Firstly we got online questionnaire filled out by online purchasers
and the results were analyzed. We also held focus groups to get further insights and to gauge the
relationships presented in our hypothesis.

3.3 Population
The population of our study consisted of all the social media users of Pakistan who have purchased
products through Facebook, Twitter, etc. For our research, we focused on social media users who
were in the age bracket of 16 to 45 and belonged to SEC A and B and upper C. This is because
people who fall in this category are mostly active on social media and often make online purchases.

20
3.4 Sample and Sampling Method
According to international researches conducted on Pakistans social media usage, 13.4 million
Pakistanis are active on social media websites. A large chunk of these users come from the largest
and the most populous city of Pakistan which is Karachi. To come up with our sample size of 384
we referred to the sample size formulas which were addressed in an article by Gang Xu titled
Estimating sample size for a descriptive study in quantitative research in the July 1999 issue of Quirk
journal. The article had a table which we have referred to. According to the article in business
researches the confidence interval is taken as 95% and the margin of error is taken to be 5%. Based
on this according to the table any population of 1 million or above has a sample of 384. This is
how we came up at our sample size of 384.

The sampling method that was employed in this research is convenience sampling. We used this
method because it was easy for us to get the online questionnaires filled by our acquaintances and
we were able to ascertain that they are part of the relevant population who we had considered for
our research.

3.5 Measurement / Instrument Selection


Primary data was collected through a structured questionnaire and focus groups.

The questionnaire was designed with the help of other relevant past researches and our variables.
To make sure that the questionnaire was valid and effective, we conducted pilot testing on 30
respondents. That helped us in identifying any issues that were present in the questionnaire and we
replacedand edited the questionnaire accordingly.

The focus groups consisted of 10 social media users per group who belonged to SEC A, B and
upper C in the age bracket of 16 to 45 and made online purchases. People who met these criteria
were selected by us on the basis of convenience. The aim of the focus group was to further get
insights from consumers and check any relationship between the variables that had not been fully
analyzed in the questionnaire.

21
Secondary data was collected by reviewing relevant past researches on the topic as well as articles
and journals.

3.6 Variables
Conceptual Frame work

*Papacharissi and Rubin (2000), (Chai et al., 2011).(SulaimanAinin et.al 2015)

Definition of Variable of Framework

In SMEs context, organizations post lot of information about their organization, products,
services and other promotional activities and also obtain information from Facebook and gain
knowledge from it. (SulaimanAinin, FarzanaParveen ,SedighehMoghavvemi , Noor
IsmawatiJaafar , Nor LiyanaMohdShuib), (2015)

The essentialsuccess factor for the small business is a good customer relationship that is
accommodated by social media. Expertise within the organization could share their ideas,
opinions and knowledge based on the queries of their customers via the social media (Schaffer,
2013).

Informational trust isdefined as a users belief about the reliability, credibility and accuracy of
information obtained from Facebook and is an important factor that influence usage (Chai et al.,
2011).

22
Papacharissi and Rubin (2000) had a construct called convenience for internet uses and Koet
al.(2005) had a convenience motivation factor for interactive advertising. Korgaonkar and Wolin
(1999) also had the word convenience in some of their scale items such as enjoy the
convenience of shopping on the web

3.7 Hypothesis
H1: Convenience has a significantcorrelation with consumer perception towards online SMEs

H2: Trust has a significant correlation with consumer perception towards online SMEs

H3: Customer relationship management has a significant correlation with consumer perception
towards online SMEs

H4: Available information has a significant correlation with consumer perception towards online
SMEs

H5: Convenience has a significant influence on consumer perception towards online SMEs

H6: Trust has a significant influence on consumer perception towards online SMEs

H7: Customer relationship management has a significant influence on consumer perception


towards online SMEs

H8: Available information has a significant influence on consumer perception towards online
SMEs.

3.8 Plan of Analysis:


a. Frequency circulation - To find out information and analyze the demographics on which
the research was based upon.
b. Cross Tabulation- To have a vast understanding of the information which was available
to use and was divided into classifications.
c. Descriptive analysis To analyze each stage of the study and comprehend it in a
meaningful way
d. Correlation To check if there was a relationship between the various variables used in
the study.

23
e. Regression To check any variety in the study and if it was reliant or not.

3. 9 Software employed
Microsoft Excel and SPSS were used to analyze the data and the findings were presented through
a report in Microsoft Word.

3.10 Validity and reliability


We conducted a pilot test of our questionnaires; the pilot survey was conducted on 19 people
through the concept of Face Validity, where they were asked to identify what the questions
signify and if they were able to relate to it and analyzed the results. After the results were
analyzed, we saw that our pilot testing was considerably valid and reliable to test it on our
sample size.

Chapter 4: Analysis

4.0 Quantitative Analysis

24
To further strengthen our study, we developed a closed ended questionnaire to perform
quantitative analysis with sample of 384.Thus the results of the study is compiled and analyzed
through the SPSS software.The questionnaire was designed to discover if social media actually
influences a consumers perception regarding small and medium enterprises that use social
media as way to promote themselves and influence users to buy their product/service. To
evaluate internal consistency and homogeneousness in variables, Cronbachs Alpha was
calculated. The results of which are-

4.1 Reliability
This research foundations are based on the framework of past studies, thus the variables in the
questionnaires are also derived from past studies. To ensure reliability our research was checked
via pilot testing was done with a sample of fifteen participants, which resulted in 0.95 using
SPSS software. The result concluded that the research was heading in the right directing and with
very high note. Moreover, we calculated Cronbachs Alpha using SPSS statistical software.
Proceeding with the study, we conducted the test on the final data. The outcome was 0.93,
suggesting that the items have relatively high internal consistency. Moreover, there is high
relatedness and dimensionality affect among the fifteen items and are homogenous construct.

Reliability Statistics

Cronbach's N of Items
Alpha

.931 5

4.2 Demographic analysis:


A survey was conducted to carry out the research for the proposed topic with a close ended
questionnaire in an attempt to gauge the response from a sample of 384 people in order to
identify the relation between the factors to use a social media platform to purchase a product
online and how it impacts the perception of the consumers and what are the insights to these
particular factors (independent variable) is then further gauged by qualitative focus groups. The
quantitative data was assessed through statistical inferences & cross tabulations whereas the
qualitative analysis has been conducted through the defined coding system.

The detailed quantitative analysis is mentioned below:

25
Gender Frequency Percentage Details
Male 297 78% The survey of 383 respondents included 78% males
and 22% females.
Female 86 22%

AGE Frequency Percentage Details


21-25 234 61% Age group of our respondents was divided amongst
ages 16-20 years, 21-25 years, 26-30 and 30 above. No
26-30 65 17% respondents were from the 16-20 years age group, 21-
25 years, 26-30 years and 30 years above recorded
30 above 84 22%
61%, 17% and 22% respectively.

Occupation Frequency Percentage Details

Student 96 25% Most of the people were salaried employees and


were doing jobs respectively, which shows a higher
JOB 237 62%
trend towards the older age group in this study.
Businessperson 50 13%

4.3 Cross tabulation:


Yes No Analysis

Frequency Percentage Frequency Percentage

26
All the 384 respondents have
Online
384 100 0 0 somehow or the other used online
purchase
mediums to purchase a product.

Online purchase
Gender Yes No Analysis

Male 297 0 When segregating on gender basis


there were 297 males who have
marked yes to this question while the
females were 86.
Female 86 0

Product bought online


Frequency Percentage Analysis
Clothes 84 22 Around 22% of the respondents had bought
clothes online & computer products followed by
shoes which were 19% and surprisingly food had
been consumed through online purchases by
only 16% of the sample.
Shoes 73 19
Books 34 9
Food 61 16
Toys 11 3
Jewelry 22 6
Computer 84 22
products

Cosmetics 11 3

Social media website usage (daily)


Frequency Percentage Analysis
Facebook 360 94 Out of 384 respondents all those who use
Facebook daily were 94% of the sample.

27
While 6% of the sample population marked
twitter as their daily use of social media.
Micro blogging 24 6

Type of social media platform used for purchase


Frequency Percentage Analysis
Facebook 214 56 Out of the 384 respondents 56% of the sample
(Social media used Facebook to purchase an online product
networking through a social media platform whereas 5%
sites) used blogs and forums.
Blogs/Forums 19 5
Others 149 39

4.4 Descriptive
Descriptive Statistics
N Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation

Convenience 384 1 5 3.52 .951


Trust 384 1 4 2.97 .983
Information 384 1 5 3.28 .980
CRM 384 1 5 3.57 .975
Perception 384 1 5 3.58 .917
Valid N (list wise) 384

In order to get a descriptive insights from respondents with regards to constructs included in
questionnaire, our survey incorporated some questions designed on Likert Scale. The scale was
based on 5 points with values ranging in between 1 to 5; with 1 being strongly agree and 5 being
strongly disagree. It can be seen that the mean value of all of the variants is in between range of
1 to 3; which provides with information that majority of respondents agreed and supported the
given statements.

4.5 Correlation
Following are the correlation analysis of the variables namely Convenience, Trust, Information,
CRM and Perception. The results concluded that all the variables are positively correlated,
28
signifying strong and positive relationship between the said constructs. Furthermore it was
determined that perception was strongly correlated to influencing the consumers. Only trust had
an acceptable correlation, while information and CRM also had strong correlation.

Variables Convenience Trust Information CRM Perception

Convenience Pearson Correlation 1 .558** .792** .782** .856**

Sig. (2-tailed) 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000


Trust Pearson Correlation .558** 1 .682** .693** .620**

Sig. (2-tailed) 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000


Information Pearson Correlation .792** .682** 1 .679** .749**

Sig. (2-tailed) 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000


CRM Pearson Correlation .782** .693** .679** 1 .913**

Sig. (2-tailed) 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000


Perception Pearson Correlation .856** .620** .749** .913** 1

Sig. (2-tailed) 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000


**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).

The correlation analysis justifies and approves our research questions given below:
1. Is it convenient to purchase products from online mediums?
Users find it easier to purchase products from social media platforms as compared to offline
shopping as it not only gives them free time to do other stuff but they avoid traffic and rush
while shopping in the comfort of their home.
2. Do users actually believe the information shared on social media?

Our second research question was very vital because there is vast knowledge on the internet. It is
very important to filter all the information from forged and factual. Consumers sometimes
disregard all the information, if consumer suspects that it is deliberate information. Thus
consumers tend to rely on more on reviews then information provided by organizations.

3. Do users trust social media as compared to other forms of marketing?

Trust is a very important factor for buyer and seller on social media. If trust does not develop, the
SMEs will lose their customer. Due to which some of the respondents were hesitant to purchase
new products from a new source. As its very risky to purchase a product from anun-trustworthy
source. Furthermore there will be no guarantee that the product will be 100% original.
Additionally, if you may require returning the product, there are very limited options present at
the moment for such concerns.

29
4. To analyze if customers relationship management form a perception when customers buy online?

Consumers tend to analyze and search for reviews and how the whole process of purchasing was
handled by the business and then through word of mouth or social media they tend to inform
their peers/colleagues/family/friends

4.6 Regression
Model Summary

Model R R Square Adjusted R Square Std. Error of the Estimate

1 .944a .892 .891 .303

a. Predictors: (Constant), CRM, Information, Trust, Convenience

Coefficientsa

Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients


Model t Sig.
B Std. Error Beta

(Constant) .230 .063 3.634 .000

Convenience .262 .033 .272 7.954 .000

1Trust -.086 .025 -.092 -3.477 .001

Information .134 .030 .143 4.522 .000

CRM .627 .030 .667 21.208 .000

a. Dependent Variable: Perception

After performing Regression Analysis in SPSS software, it was profoundly noticeable that all the
variables (Convenience, Trust, Information and CRM) were key influencer in the decision
making for purchasing. The regression evaluated value of adjusted R square to be at 0.89;
consequently proving that 89% variation in decision was due to the suggested variables.

Results from regression are found to be significant as p values are near to zero, which denotes
that independent variables carry a high impact on dependent variables in this case. The value of
impact of each independent variable individually is signified by Beta coefficient and the t value

30
of almost each variable with zero p value indicates that parameters have negligible chances of
being zero.

Regression equation found from test is given hereby:

Influence on consumers perception = -0.230 + (Convenience x 0.272) + (Trust x -0.092) + (Information x


0.143) + (CRM x 0.667)

4.7ANOVA/T-test
ANOVAa

Model Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.

Regression 287.125 4 71.781 780.447 .000b

1 Residual 34.858 379 .092

Total 321.984 383

a. Dependent Variable: Perception

b. Predictors: (Constant), CRM, Information, Trust, Convenience

The value of p being < 0.05 denotes a high level of significance between variables and it can be
inferred that there might be an impact on Perception due to name Convenience, Trust,
Information and CRM.

4.8 Qualitative Analysis


To further build credibility to our study qualitative analysis were conducted through Focus
Groups. We conducted Focus Group of 30 people, who were divided into 10 people per group
from various age groups. Thus the results of the Focus Group were analyzed through
observation and analysis through coding. The result of which are

Thus the results of the study is compiled and analyzed through the SPSS software. The
questionnaire was designed to discover if social media actually influences a consumers
perception regarding small and medium enterprises that use social media as way to promote
themselves and influence users to buy their product/service. To evaluate internal consistency and
homogeneousness in variables, Cronbachs Alpha was calculated. The results of which are-

4.9 Categories

31
1) Fast Response
2) Can order anything any time
3) Everything is available online
4) Information is easy available
5) Variety of options
6) Feedback
7) Saves Time
8) Cash on delivery
9) Trust
10) Reviews
11) Quality Products
12) Wide range of products
13) More time for other chores
14) Delivery service
15) Return policy
16) One stop Solution
17) Better experience
18) Searching is easy
19) After sales service
20) Can look at more options, easily
21) Feedback from other users
22) Quality of items
23) Cheap products
24) Avoid Traffic
25) No bargaining
26) Saves petrol

4.10 Coding
4.10.1 Convenient

All respondents felt that it was more convenient as compared to going out to shop for something.
They felt online shopping through social media platforms as made their life easier. Many
companies have opened their online retail stores as well so which makes it hassle free and
everything can be done by staying at home.

4.10.2 Company Image

32
It was important to see the company image, not all companies seem trust worthy. Companies which
have a positive feedback or are mostly talked about not only online but amongst family/friends are
more trust worthy.

4.10.3 Ease of Information

Most respondents felt that it is a faster medium to get information and easy to use. Information can
be received and interpreted better as compared to information available offline. Many people talk
a lot about products and services on social media which helps people decide which company to
purchase from before going to their page and buying something.

4.10.4 Ease of Availability

As compared to offline, it was an easy way to communicate with the company with a faster
response time. Companies are looking to make customers so response rate is quick and fast. If
there is a complaint the company tries to resolve it right then and there with and easing the person
because it is faster and easier.

4.11 Discussion
From the detailed analysis conducted on the defined sample population using cross tabulations,
statistical inferences & axial coding we were able to identify and study the depth of the factors
identified through the available literature. It was observed from the cross tabulated data that people
usually use facebook the most during their daily lives and the fact that they use facebook only the
most to buy a certain product online. Further on it was concluded that people tend to buy clothes
and computer products through online mediums the most followed by other categories such as
food, toys, books etc. The correlation shows a strong relationship between convenience, CRM,
information and consumer perception whereas the trust factors correlation was in acceptable range
with consumer perception. As far as the regression analysis is concerned the convenience, CRM,
trust and information aspect have significant impact on consumer perception. However, a shift in
consumer perception by 1 unit will bring in a -0.86 impact on trust, which can be defined by the
fact that if consumer perception of their prior experience is favorable the lesser they trust that
particular transaction. The qualitative analysis helped us to explore into insights into the factors
other than what we identified through the literature.

Taking the convenience factor in consideration, there were a couple of questions in the
questionnaire to gauge the relation & impact of convenience towards consumer perception. There
was a strong relationship in convenience and consumer perception and a significant impact
between the two. That is, people do form the opinion that it is easy & convenient to purchase a
product through online social media platforms. According to the literature identified from the
secondary data businesses do understand the importance of having an online presence while how

33
convenient it is for consumers to make purchasing decision through social media and how much
importance should they lay on this aspect can be clearly assessed through our analysis.

With respect to the trust aspect of our research, there was a positive relationship but in acceptable
range and a significant impact of trust and consumer perception. However when we study the beta
value of the trust factor, it can be assessed that a single unit of change in consumer perception will
bring in a negative change in the beta value of trustor it can be said that it negatively impacts the
trust aspect. In simple words the more people form a perception about them buying from a
facebook page the less likely it is possible for them to trust the credibility of that transaction. Thus
relation and impact is there however a change in perception impacts trust negatively.

There was a strong relation and a significant impact of customer relationship management factor
and consumer perception which influences the perception of a person when he/she purchase a
product online through social media. Thus it can be said that it is easier to interact and
communicate when a person buys a product online, both for the business and the customer.

There was a strong relation and a significant impact of information factor and consumer perception
when a person purchase a product online. This means that people do look out for clear information
when they tend to buy products through social media.

As far as the qualitative analysis is concerned, it helped us to explore into insights into the factors
other than what we identified through the literature. The major ones that were identified through
the focus group were the ease of availability and company image aiding consumer perception when
theyre buying a product online and how they impact the process of online buying which has been
identified through the aforementioned axial coding.

5 Conclusion:
The core idea of this study lies in the concept of using social media to purchase a particular product.
The aim of our research was to identify how does social media influences consumer perception
when they purchase through online Smes (facebook page) and to understand the relationship
between the two. For the aforementioned tasks a quantitative analysis was conducted where as to
gain further insights to the factors which one person has in mind when he/she purchases through
online SMEs, a qualitative analysis was conducted.

Through the survey which was conducted on a sample size of 384 people, it was analyzed that all
four variables have high or moderate relation with consumer perceptions. However the trust factor
when a person buys through online smes relation is in acceptable range. As far as the regression
implication is concerned the convenience, CRM, trust and information aspect have significant
impact on consumer perception. However, a shift in consumer perception by 1 unit will bring in a
-0.86 impact on trust, which can be defined by the fact that if consumer perception of their prior
experience is favorable the lesser they trust that particular transaction. Through the qualitative
analysis of focus groups we are able to gain insights as to what entices a person to purchase a

34
product from an online facebook page and why. The insights that we gained other than the four
factors identified through literature includes the company image and the ease of availability aspect
which a person consider when purchasing a product through online means.

This analysis provides useful insight to entrepreneurs & business owners as well as for the
customers. For entrepreneurs this analysis would provide a strong base to consider the facts to start
a business online. For those businesses who want to take their offline business online this research
would help them to find a competitive edge and factors to consider before introducing their
business in the online community. This research would influence those consumer who prefer to
buy product through conventional means failing to see the advantages of online buying.

6 Recommendations:
Relying on the survey analysis and insights gained from the focus group, we would like to propose
the following recommendations for the relevant stakeholders of this report(entrepreneurs willing
to start an online business, established business wishing to take their offline business online and
the consumers).:

Companies and entrepreneurs can take into account the insights from this research to either
start a business online or take offline business online in an attempt to improve or frame
their core business strategy accordingly.
Companies can identify the core competence and can easily focus on which particular
aspect to focus on in order to be successful online.
Businesses can frame their marketing strategies as they would know which factor have they
focused on before coming up with the idea of an online enterprise and can aim to position
itself in the mind of the customers accordingly.
Firms need to lay more importance on focusing on either one or all the factors in order to
flourish their business online.

35
Chapter 7 - References

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Chapter 8 Appendix

Questionnaire
On
Influence of Social Media on Consumer Perception towards online Small and Medium Enterprises
(SMEs)

1. Gender:
Male
Female

2. Age:

16-20 21-25 26-30 30 above

3. Occupation:

Student Job Businessperson Housewife Not working

4. Have you purchased a product from an online store?(Purchase means your product has also
been delivered)
Yes
No

Please do not proceed further if you have not made an online purchase before.

5. When you say you bought a product online, what product did you buy?(You can tick more than
one option)

Clothes Shoes Books Food Toys Jewelry Furniture Computer Cosmetics Other
products

6. Which of the following social media sites you are using on a daily basis?

Social networking Microblogging Blogs/Forum Instagram Others


sites (Facebook) (Twitter)

7. Which Form of social media did you use for the purchase?

Social networking Microblogging Blogs/Forum Instagram Others


sites (Facebook) (Twitter)

39
Convenience in this context is the ease with which a customer is able to make a purchase (includes both
pre & post purchase delivery aspect)
Strongly Strongly
Disagree Neutral Agree
Questions Disagree Agree

1 2 3 4 5
1 Do agree that it is easier for people to search & order online?
2 Do you agree that information searching (differentiating b/w
products) is easier through social media?
3
Would you agree that ordering through social media is more
convenient than the traditional methods of purchase?

Trust in this context is the amount of credibility people have on social media if they want to purchase
anything (includes both pre & post purchase delivery aspect)
Strongly Strongly
Disagree Neutral Agree
Questions Disagree Agree
1 2 3 4 5
Do you agree that product & delivery claims made on Facebook
1
pages are reliable?
Do you agree that you have trust on the quality of the product
2 being purchased, as you cant touch the product unless it is
purchased?
3
Do you think product information & after sales service on social
media have a higher credibility as compared to other mediums?

Information in this context is the level of information that is present on social media in order for
customers to make a purchase (Includes only pre-purchase aspect).
Strongly Strongly
Disagree Neutral Agree
Questions Disagree Agree
1 2 3 4 5

1 Do you agree that with the social media sites, you are able to
seek out products/services information completely?
2 Do you agree that the amount of information provided is
sufficient to make the purchase through social media?

Customer Relationship Management is the pre and post purchase exchange between the customers &
online retailers.
Strongly Strongly
Questions Disagree Neutral Agree
Disagree Agree

40
1 2 3 4 5
Do you agree that communicating with the company & with its
1 customers is most suitable when it comes to purchasing through
social media?
2
Do you agree that feedbacks (reviews/comments/posts and so
on) on social media affect your purchase?
Do you agree that social media provides an effective and
3 powerful platform for consumers to communicate with each
other and with the companies?
Consumer Perception is the receptivity of consumers of buying through social media.

Strongly Strongly
Disagree Neutral Agree
Questions Disagree Agree
1 2 3 4 5
1 Do you agree that it is more convenient to order online?
Are you likely to trust a certain brand or product or service after
2 you have read positive comments/reviews/online articles etc
about it?
3
Do you agree that, for instance, advertisements/blog posts/ FB
pages/user reviews on social media influences you?

4 Do you agree that information inflow about products aid in


making a purchase?

41
Focus Group Protocol

Participant Information Male and Female

Age group 18 years to 40 years

Occupation - Student, Housewife, Businessman/woman

Date 25th October 2015 (Tentative)

Location Gloria Jeans or Dunkin Donuts

No of Participants 15 people - 3 groups (5 people per group)

Length Approximate time 30 minutes per group.

Name of Moderator Fahad Zafar / Mujtaba Abbas

Purpose of Research - The purpose of the focus group is to find out if social media actually
influences a consumers perception regarding small and medium enterprises that use social
media as way to promote themselves and influence users to buy their product/service.

Questions-

Probing

- Is it easy and convenient to buy something online?


- Have you bought anything online recently?
- Do you agree that it is easy to search for information online?
- Do you believe the information you see online?
- Is it easy to communicate with companies online?

Prompting

- Tell us about your experience when buying something online?


- Would you rather buy something online or go out, what is more convenient for you?
- Do you agree that people now prefer to buy products online?
- What factors entice you towards purchasing products/services online, is it convenience ,
customer relationship management, trust or the information provided was relevant or is
there anything else you can think of ?
Please share an experience as well.

42
Chapter 9 Plagiarism

Turnitin Originality Report

Fahad_Influence_of_Social_Enterprises_SME_s_-1535295.docx by Anonymous

From ReportsFall-2015 (Fall2015)

Processed on 21-Dec-2015 10:16 PKT


ID: 617213631
Word Count: 9445

Similarity Index

13%

Similarity by Source

Internet Sources: 6%

Publications: 3%

Student Papers: 10%

Sources:

2% match (student papers from 19-Dec-2015)

Class: Fall2015
Assignment:
Paper ID: 616916046

2% match (student papers from 06-Dec-2013)

Submitted to Higher Education Commission Pakistan on 2013-12-06

1% match (Internet from 11-May-2015)

43
http://aisel.aisnet.org/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1052&context=pacis2011

1% match (publications)

Erkan Akar. "An Examination of the Factors Influencing Consumers' Attitudes Toward Social
Media Marketing", Journal of Internet Commerce, 01/2011

1% match (Internet from 02-May-2015)

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:2qNFuNv2GokJ:www.ijept.org/in

< 1% match (Internet from 12-Mar-2014)

http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?articleid=17090758

< 1% match (student papers from 21-Sep-2015)

Submitted to University of Sunderland on 2015-09-21

< 1% match (student papers from 06-May-2015)

Submitted to Segi University College on 2015-05-06

< 1% match (student papers from 15-Sep-2015)

Submitted to Queen's University of Belfast on 2015-09-15

10

< 1% match (Internet from 29-Mar-2015)

http://eprints.usq.edu.au/19730/1/Hafeez-Baig_2010_whole.pdf

11

44
< 1% match (Internet from 19-Apr-2013)

http://www.acrwebsite.org/search/view-conference-proceedings.aspx?id=5956

12

< 1% match (student papers from 03-Feb-2014)

Submitted to Bournemouth University on 2014-02-03

13

< 1% match (Internet from 07-Feb-2015)

http://www.vietnamica.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/GBATA2014-Readings-Book.pdf

14

< 1% match (Internet from 20-Dec-2015)

http://pacis2015.comp.nus.edu.sg/_proceedings/PACIS_2015_submission_81.pdf

15

< 1% match (student papers from 13-Apr-2015)

Submitted to Symbiosis International University on 2015-04-13

16

< 1% match ()

http://is.lse.ac.uk/support/endnote/jsis.enl

17

< 1% match (student papers from 13-Nov-2015)

Submitted to University College Birmingham on 2015-11-13

18

< 1% match (publications)

Kim, Angella J., and Eunju Ko. "Do social media marketing activities enhance customer equity?
An empirical study of luxury fashion brand", Journal of Business Research, 2012.

45
19

< 1% match (Internet from 14-Jan-2014)

http://www.edusoft.ro/brain/index.php/brain/article/download/198/326

20

< 1% match (student papers from 08-Sep-2012)

Submitted to Waterford Institute of Technology on 2012-09-08

21

< 1% match (student papers from 09-Jul-2014)

Submitted to University of Leeds on 2014-07-09

22

< 1% match (student papers from 27-Aug-2015)

Submitted to University of Leeds on 2015-08-27

23

< 1% match (Internet from 22-Apr-2014)

http://thesis.eur.nl/pub/14235/Wal-M.A.J.-van-der-376947mw-.docx

24

< 1% match (student papers from 13-Nov-2014)

Submitted to Bridgepoint Education on 2014-11-13

25

< 1% match (Internet from 27-Aug-2015)

http://uir.unisa.ac.za/bitstream/handle/10500/4921/dissertation_glensor_.pdf.txt?sequence=3

26

< 1% match (Internet from 12-Aug-2009)

46
http://www.iadb.org/res/publications/pubfiles/pubR-556.pdf

27

< 1% match (student papers from 19-Sep-2013)

Submitted to University of Huddersfield on 2013-09-19

28

< 1% match (Internet from 04-Nov-2015)

http://etd.uum.edu.my/4084/2/s813371_abstract.pdf

29

< 1% match (Internet from 20-Oct-2009)

http://ethesys.lib.fcu.edu.tw/ETD-search/getfile?URN=etd-0702108-001118&filename=etd-
0702108-001118.pdf

30

< 1% match (Internet from 03-Oct-2013)

http://www.studymode.com/essays/Market-Research-Methodology-653956.html

31

< 1% match (publications)

Langholm, Sivert. "Short-distance migration, circles and flows: Movement to and from
Ullensaker according to the population census lists of 1865", Scandinavian Economic History
Review, 1975.

32

< 1% match (Internet from 16-Nov-2006)

http://www.marketingpower.com/content/ecommerce_biblio_hofacker.txt

33

< 1% match (Internet from 08-Mar-2015)

http://www.slideshare.net/FaisalWali/at-business-management-review-december-edition-2012

47
34

< 1% match (Internet from 08-Jan-2015)

http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/6106/7/07_chapter%202.pdf

35

< 1% match (Internet from 10-Mar-2014)

http://ccsenet.org/journal/index.php/ass/article/viewFile/21494/14025

36

< 1% match (Internet from 06-Jan-2015)

http://pure.au.dk/portal/files/45314292/301242.pdf

37

< 1% match (publications)

Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 2015.

38

< 1% match (student papers from 25-Jul-2012)

48