How the Conscious and Automatic Information Processing Modes Influence Consumers’ Continuance Decision in an e-Commerce Website

Christy M.K. Cheung, Xiabing Zheng, Matthew K.O. Lee


Conscious and automatic information processing modes represent two approaches to deal with IS continuance. Existing IS studies mostly viewed them as two independent systems and examined IS continuance through either a cognitive deliberating process or an automatic process. In this study, we attempt to clarify the complex nature of IS continuance by examining various interactions between the two information processes. Particularly, we argued that habit activates the heuristic information processing mode and facilitates consumers’ decision making through interacting with key elements of the rational decision process. We conducted a longitudinal study to empirically test the research model with 385 consumers of an e-commerce website. The results show that the two information processing modes work in parallel to explain consumers’ continuance decision. Satisfaction, perceived enjoyment, and alternative attractiveness have significant direct effects on continuance intention. Furthermore, habit exhibits a significant negative moderating effect on the relationship between alternative attractiveness and continuance intention. We believe that this study provides new insights to both IS research and practice.


IS continuance; Human information processing; E-commerce websites; Longitudinal study; Consumers’ continuance decision

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