A study of factors that affect user intentions toward email service switching

Gimun Kim, Bongsik Shin, Ho Geun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

116 Citations (Scopus)


Internet portals have long been using email services to attract new members and retain existing customers. Recent announcements by major Internet portals of increases in email storage capacity demonstrate this strategy. It is, however, uncertain how people react to such announcements. We wished to understand the mechanisms associated with users' intention to switch their current email service provider. Key variables pertaining to customer satisfaction with email service, attractive alternatives, and switching cost were examined to explain the dynamics of switching. An empirical study based on 1408 survey responses confirmed the importance of user satisfaction for service continuation. The variables attractive alternatives and continuity cost also demonstrated strong association with intention to switch. We found that the variable attractive alternatives moderated the relationship between customer satisfaction and intention to switch, but a moderating effect of switching cost was not found. Our investigation indicated that the findings of extant studies on the dynamics of service switching or re-purchase also apply to email services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)884-893
Number of pages10
JournalInformation and Management
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Oct

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is supported by the ubiquitous Autonomic Computing and Network Project, the Ministry of Information and Communication (MIC) 21st Century Frontier R&D Program in Korea.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Management Information Systems
  • Information Systems
  • Information Systems and Management


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