Customer behavior in the context of sharing platforms

3 min to read

Need to evaluate the whole user journey while prototyping your project to make sure all the behavior stages are properly handled and give answers to your potential users at each step.
The customer journey is divided into the pre-purchase, service encounter, and post-encounter stages based on consumer motives and behaviors related to collaborative consumption, which includes peer-to-peer sharing.

Pre-purchase stage

Need awareness Clients are searching for new offers when they have a strong need or have a bad experience with the previous service provider, high price, or poor quality.
Instead of buying new goods customers prefer using sharing platforms, where you can easily rent or earn money by sharing something.

To make the right decision users checking the following info:

-Product Brands

-Products Variations

-Product Quality

-Product Alternatives.

The key point here is playing information provided based on online reviews and peer ratings, cause it is based on someone's experience. Faced with new sharing platforms users are feeling uncomfortable with new interfaces, hidden taxes, and scammers. The smooth UI and UX helps your users enjoy the app. When the liquidity of the platform increase the more time spend on high-quality matching between provider and users. This can reduce the quality and number of transactions per provider. For example, Li and Netessine empirically demonstrated that as a platform's number of hosts and travelers doubled, search costs (i.e. search friction) increased through an increase of 18.3 percent of inquiries sent to hosts and 19.6 percent to travelers. As a result, traveler confirmation rates dropped by 15.4 percent and host occupancy by 15.9 percent, and the platform lost 5.6 percent of potential transactions due to the increased search friction. Been faced with a huge number of different option user spend a lot of time for search and evaluating the best deal. Spending time and losing selected offers tends to lose users on the platform.
To help your users feel comfortable with the searching process platform should include:

- filter, sort, compare and rank options, and create customizable search tools and recommendation systems that cater better to individuals' preferences

- feedback and rating systems to reduce friction caused by information asymmetry

- some specific functions (ex. instant booking function)

- online payments

Making a booking decision

The first booking process is taking more time and power to register, turn on all needed settings. Help your users go hough this process with prompts inside the app. The second booking is going smoothly, cause after registration you have all lines auto-filled, payment taxes reduce and as a result, you enjoy the process. However, repeat users still may have difficulty making a booking decision if presented with too many options due to information overload and choice fatigue.

The consumption stage in peer-to-peer sharing platforms include:

  • experiential and hedonic,
  • social value.

Experimental and hedonic value

Sharing businesses can also create experience scrapes that offer added dimensions such as entertainment, education, escapism, aesthetics, serendipity, and personalization.

Social value

Social interactions between actors can form an important part of the consumption experience and offer value, including authenticity and local cultural aspects. Here, Airbnb's idiosyncratic offerings that reflect each host's lifestyle, personality, and culture provide a wider range of options to match user tastes and differentiate their travel experience. Increasingly, however, the consumer and the service provider may not need to meet in person. For example, a consumer can be given a code to enter an Airbnb apartment or to open a keylock box, rendering in-person service interactions unnecessary. This tends to be particularly the case for professional Airbnb hosts who have multiple listings as opposed to the more casual Airbnb hosts who deliver authentic experiences. While in the latter case social and authentic experiences may be diminished, accessibility and convenience are increased.

Post-Purchase Behavior

All the activities and experiences that follow purchase are included in the post purchase behavior. Usually, after making a purchase, consumers experience post-purchase dissonance. They sometimes regret their decisions made. It mainly occurs due to a large number of alternatives available, good performance of alternatives or attractiveness of alternatives, etc.
The marketers sometimes need to assure the consumer that the choice made by them is the right one. The seller can mention or even highlight the important features or attributes and benefits of the product to address and solve their concerns if any.
A high level of post-purchase dissonance is negatively related to the level of satisfaction that the consumer draws out of product usage. To reduce post-purchase dissonance, consumers may sometimes even return or exchange the product.

Tetyana Holovchenko
Co-founder, Marketing specialist at CookieDev
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