Title: Understanding website useability: an eye-tracking study of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games website

Authors: B. Christine Green; Nicholas Murray; Stacy Warner

Addresses: The University of Texas at Austin, 1 University Station, D3700, Austin, Texas 78712, USA . ' 166 Minges Coliseum, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA. ' 166 Minges Coliseum, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA

Abstract: E-commerce has become a key element of most sport websites, yet sport websites are expected to do more than sell merchandise. Consequently, sport marketers are faced with a delicate balancing act between ease of use and provision of exciting, multimedia content to meet the needs of their consumers. Eye-tracking technology is used in this study to identify elements that enhance or interfere with website usability. Users were provided with a purchase intention and measures of fixation on relevant areas of interest were collected. Retrospective think alouds provided users a chance to explain their attention patterns. Size, placement, and active links were identified as important features of useability. Experienced online shoppers and women were more likely to focus on the shopping task, and less likely to be distracted by the sport-related features of the site. Implications for using eye-tracking technology for sport marketing are discussed.

Keywords: web marketing; eye-tracking; Winter Olympics 2010; Vancouver; Canada; Olympic Games; sporting events; online shopping; web retailing; visual attention; electronic commerce; e-commerce; virtual shopping; internet; world wide web; website usability; sport websites; merchandise; sport marketers; multimedia content; consumers; consumer needs; purchase intentions; fixation measures; retrospective think alouds; attention patterns; placement; active links; experienced shoppers; online shoppers; women; gender; shopping tasks; distractions; sport-related features; sport management; sport marketing; emerging technologies.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSMM.2011.044793

International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing, 2011 Vol.10 No.3/4, pp.257 - 271

Received: 09 Mar 2011
Accepted: 09 Aug 2011

Published online: 09 Jan 2012 *

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