Proposing the Affect-Trust Infusion Model (ATIM) to Explain and Predict the Influence of High- and Low-Affect Infusion on Web Vendor Trust


Trust is just as essential to online business as it is to offline transactions but can be more difficult to achieve-especially for newer websites with unknown web vendors. Research on web-based trust development explains that web vendor trust can be created by both cognitive and affective (e.g., emotion-based) influences. But under what circumstances will emotion or cognition be more dominate in trust establishment? Theory-based answers to these questions can help online web vendors design better websites that account for unleveraged factors that will increase trust in the web vendor. To this end, we use the Affect Infusion Model and trust transference to propose the Affect-Trust Infusion Model (ATIM) that explains and predicts how and when cognition, through perceived website performance (PwP), and positive emotion (PEmo) each influence web vendor trust. ATIM explains the underlying causal mechanisms that determine the degree of affect infusion and the subsequent processing strategy that a user adopts when interacting with a new website. Under high-affect infusion, PEmo acts as a mediator between PwP and vendor trust; under low-affect infusion, PwP primarily impacts trust and PEmo is dis-intermediated. We review two distinct, rigorously validated experiments that empirically support ATIM. To further extend the contributions of ATIM, we demonstrate how use of specific contextual features-rooted in theory and that drive one's choice of affect infusion and cognitive processing-can be leveraged into a methodology that we propose to further enhance user-centered design (UCD). We further detail several exciting research opportunities that can leverage ATIM.

Meeting Name

ICIS 2011 JAIS Sponsored Theory Development Workshop (2011: Dec. 3, Shanghai, China)


Business and Information Technology

Keywords and Phrases

Trust; Affect Infusion; Positive Website Performance; Positive Emotion; Cognition; Affect-trust Infusion Model; Trust Transference

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Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

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© 2011 Association for Information Systems (AIS), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Dec 2011