Online shopping communities have emerged amid growing social shopping activities and involve user-centered online platforms that encourage user-generated content and interactions, such as reading and writing reviews, rating products, and sharing shopping experiences. However, similar to other online platforms and communities, online shopping communities face challenges to provide tailored content and support appropriate socialization to engage users and encourage individualized contribution within the communities. To provide unique, personalized support for each individual user, this study developed personas in online shopping communities based on their motivation for participation, as well as reading and posting behaviors. Based on the findings from 20 interviews and focus groups with 24 active online shopping community participants, we developed an online survey on MTurk to investigate the characteristics of the personas and received 194 valid responses. Four persona types emerge after the analysis of both the qualitative and quantitative data—Opportunists, Contributors, Explorers, and Followers.
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