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Manuscript deadline
30 December 2020

Cover image - Journal of Internet Commerce

Journal of Internet Commerce

Special Issue Editor(s)

Jamid Ul Islam, Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing, College of Business Administration, Prince Sultan University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
[email protected]

Zillur Rahman, Professor, Department of Management studies, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, India
[email protected]

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Progressing Understanding of Online Customer Engagement: Recent Trends and Challenges

Over the last few decades, Marketing has undergone a shift from transactional to non-transactional relationships, which stresses the significance of long-term, value-laden customer interactions (Lemon & Verhoef, 2016). Consistent with this shifting perspective, new concepts have emerged that have recently attracted a lot of attention and traction from both scholars and practitioners. One of the most promising trends that has recently evolved in the area of Marketing is that of ‘Customer engagement’ (Islam & Rahman, 2016). With its core centering on customers’ cognitive, emotional, and behavioral investments in interactions (Hollebeek et al., 2014), customer engagement (CE) offers thoughtful insights into the dynamics characterizing customers and brands (Hollebeek et al., 2019). Described as a means to enhance the overall customer experience and firms’ performance, CE is progressively being used as one of the most persuasive marketing strategies (Islam et al., 2019; Paruthi & Kaur, 2017).  In an increasingly interactive environment, shaped up by a multitude of technology-enabled interfaces, today’s tech-savvy customers spend a considerable amount of time online (Islam & Rahman, 2017). As a result, marketers are making significant investments in providing customers seamless digital experiences and immediate customized solutions to engage them with their brands (Kaur et al., 2020). Parallel to its practical relevance, online CE has also received a significant scholarly attention in the recent Marketing literature (Hollebeek et al., 2019; Khan et al., 2019).

Despite the practical and academic enthusiasm surrounding the concept of customer engagement, there still exist significant research gaps. There is also a lack of consistency in research models studying CE in diverse online contexts, which warrants further strengthening of the theoretical foundations of the concept (Hollebeek et al., 2019; Islam & Rahman, 2016a).  Insights are required to explore the broader theme of CE focused on Web 2.0 dyadic interactions in order to delineate how the adoption of new technologies can assist practitioners in fostering CE effectively (Marbach et al., 2019).  For reasons such as these, it is therefore vital for scholars to explore online CE in distinct ways and across diverse industry setups and geographic contexts to further strengthen its dominance and effectiveness in Marketing.

Consistent with the above review, this special issue aims to advance theory and generate practical insights pertaining to online customer engagement. We welcome submissions of original manuscripts that offer insights into the conceptual, theoretical, and empirical advancements of both the positively and negatively valenced expressions of online CE.

Submissions should contribute to understanding of how companies can manage online customer engagement in ways that benefit their performance and build strong customer-firm relationships.   Topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Conceptual development of online customer engagement through different psychological theories.
  • Role of CE in streamlining customer decision making journey.
  • Role of Gamification in facilitating CE.
  • CE through technological advancements (e.g., Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality).
  • Mobile applications and online CE.
  • Drivers and barriers of CE in the online domain.
  • Cross-cultural theory and research on CE.
  • CE in emerging markets.
  • Negatively valanced expressions of customer engagement.
  • Ethical issues relating to online CE.

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Submission Instructions

Authors should submit manuscripts of between 8,000–10,000 words (excluding tables, references, captions, footnotes and endnotes). All submissions must strictly follow the guidelines for the Journal of Internet Commerce. These are available at the Instructions for Authors page.

Manuscripts should be submitted online using the Journal of Internet Commerce ScholarOne Manuscripts. New users should first create an account.

To submit your manuscript to the Special Issue choose “Special Issue Article” from the Manuscript Type list when you come to submit your paper. Also, when you come to the ‘Details and Comments’ page, answer ‘yes’ to the question ‘Is this manuscript a candidate for a special issue’ and select the Special Issue Title of Online Customer Engagement in the text field provided.

Informal queries regarding guest editors’ expectations or the suitability of specific research topics should be directed to the Special Issue Editors:

The closing date for submissions is 30 December 2020.


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