This article provides insight into a less investigated area that deals with marketers’ responses to negative reviews—a phenomenon known as webcare. Specifically, it examines the effects of (a) salient webcare characteristics like strength and timeliness on consumer forgiveness in the presence of review helpfulness as a moderator, and (b) forgiveness on consumers’ cognitive, affective, and conative loyalty. A 2 (webcare strength: strong vs. weak) × 2 (webcare timeliness: timely vs. delayed) × 2 (review helpfulness: high vs. low) between-subjects experiment in a fictitious casual dining restaurant context reveals that webcare timeliness and strength of webcare play affect consumer forgiveness positively which subsequently affects consumer loyalty. These findings are distinctive from previous research because it opens up a new area that deals with managers’ responses to negative reviews. It also explores how the detrimental effects of these reviews can be reduced by manipulating salient characteristics of managers’ responses, i.e., webcare.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Human-Computer Interaction
- Management of Technology and Innovation