objectives: Although considerable research has investigated the impact of various store environment elements on shopping behavior, the existing works does not provide an explanation for the differential effectiveness of arousal levels in store environments or managerially relevant guidelines for a specific store. The objective of this article is to present and provide empirical support for a theoretical framework that outlines the impact of background colour on consumer emotional response and subsequent shopping intention. This study attempts to examine both arousal perceptions and the actual physiological arousal generated by exposure to various color.
Theoretical framework: the S-O-R Model
The Stimulus-Organism-Response (S-O-R) model has been widely used inhuman behavior researches. It was first proposed by environmental psychologists Mehrabian and Russell in their 1974’s study. Their theoretical model systematically demonstrates a complete purchase process which begins with stimuli and ends with evaluation of products and services. It reveals that behavioral tendency is the result of individual’s cognitive states that affected by various stimuli. According to their theory, stimuli refers to the factors that may cause a physiological or psychological response. Many studies have tried to investigate several stimuli variables at the same time and anticipate their subsequent effect. However, the complex and numerous stimuli may have reciprocal effect in singlespecified environmental situation. Consequently, it might obscure the effects of each variable and become difficult to identify its corresponding behavioral outcomes. The complexity of stimuli results in the decreased validity of the experiment. Thus, this study mainly investigates one variable—wed page background colour—in online buying environment.
Other researches using this theoretical framework also confirmed the effectiveness and validity of the S-O-R paradigm (Slama and Tashcian, 1987; Buckley, 1991; Partington, 2000; Hee-soon and Lim, 2013). Thus, this study attempt to establish a framework on the basis ofthe Mehrabian-Russell model, as Figure 1 shows. In this investigation, stimuli refers to both hue and saturation of wed-page background colour; Organism refers to pleasure and arousal as discussed above; Response are observed as customers’ purchase intention.