Nowadays Online Consumers' Rights and Interests. Case Study- the Romanian Educated Online Young Consumer

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Abstract. The digital age brought along the appearance of a new type of consumer, the online consumer. Taking into consideration the serious security threats of the virtual market, the purpose of this article is to emphasize several significant aspects related to online consumer’s rights and interests, with a special interest on the educated online young consumers in Romania. We used desk and field research and carried out an online exploratory, quantitative survey, with the questionnaire as the main instrument, the valid number of the responses being 394 (all less than thirty years old, educated, online consumers from Romania). Related to this sample survey, the study’s findings clearly indicate that the level of information regarding their online rights and interests is average towards small, and their confidence in the security protection of the online shopping is situated at a low level of confidence. The relevance of the research for practice is given by the topic under discussion. Our study is valuable due to the used methodology and the updated gathered data regarding Romanian educated online young consumers’ perception on their rights and interests. Keywords: generation Y online consumer, online consumer’s rights and interests, Romanian educated online consumers.

NOWADAYS ONLINE CONSUMERS' RIGHTS AND INTERESTS. CASE STUDY- THE ROMANIAN EDUCATED ONLINE YOUNG CONSUMER

Nicoleta-Dorina RACOLŢA-PAINA
Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca Mihail Kogălniceanu street, no. 1, Cluj-Napoca, Romania e-mail: nicoleta.paina@euro.ubbcluj.ro

Theodora Alexandra LUCA
Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca Mihail Kogălniceanu street, no. 1, Cluj-Napoca, Romania e-mail: theodora_luca@yahoo.com

Management & Marketing Challenges for the Knowledge Society (2011) Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 255-272

Management & Marketing

1. Introduction
Nowadays’ hectic society spins around the remarkable changes brought along by the informational era both at an individual level and on the market companies operate on. Accordingly, the Internet opened the horizons towards a digital world of information, networking and lack of time and space barriers. Moreover, it triggered the appearance of a “New Economy”, new generation- Generation Y and a new consumer- the online consumer. In this context, the aim of this article is to analyze and provide a better insight on the young, educated online consumers’ level of acknowledgment regarding their rights and interest in the online environment, as they are more and more targeted by companies, with a special interest on educated online young consumers’ perception on their rights and interests. From this perspective, we have carried out a research at the level of the Romanian educated online young consumers, analyzing on a sampling of 400 respondents their level of awareness regarding their online rights, interests and safety aspects as online shoppers. The study’s findings clearly draw attention on the acute need of legal actions that ensure not only rights protection but also a real implementation at the level of online consumers, regarding information access and practice measures. The primary research- the survey- was carried out during May 2010-July 2010, and had as main instrument the questionnaire.

2. Issues regarding the online consumer’s rights and interests The online consumer has gained more and more importance in recent years. The rapid spread of online shopping is clearly seen in statistics, over 875 million consumers shopping online, with a 40% growth in just two years (Achille, 2008). The most purchased products and services include books, clothing, music, films, airline tickets, as well as electronic equipment and groceries (Nielsen Global Online Shopping Report, 2008). Allred et al. (2006) spoke of 3 main categories of online shoppers- socializers, e-shopping lovers, e-value leaders, while Kau et al. (2003) identified 6 other segments- on-off, comparison, traditional, dual, e-laggard and...
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