Consumer Behavior

Feeling Disconnected: Protection Motivation and Acceptance of Online Shopping During COVID-19

  • Song-yi Youn (University of Missouri)
  • Md. Rafiqul Islam Rana (University of Missouri)


The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the retail industry hard. Because of lockdowns and the desire to protect themselves from COVID-19, consumers were unable to visit physical stores as usual. Further, the prolonged period of  stay-at-home protocols have reduced consumers’ psychological wellbeing. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to identify social connectedness’s (i.e., feeling more or less connected) moderating role in online consumers’ perceptions of shopping during COVID-19. Online survey was conducted to collect consumers responses toward online shopping, and PLS-SEM was conducted to analyze the dataset. Results reveal that although consumers perceived a threat from the COVID-19 virus and evaluated online shopping as an effective way to avoid it, this effect on attitude did not differ depending upon different levels of feeling (dis)connected. In addition, consumers’ perceptions of functional or emotional aspects of the service influenced their post-pandemic adoption behavior differently depending upon their perception of (dis)connectedness during COVID-19.

Keywords: feeling disconnected, protection motivation, COVID-19, retail, online shopping

How to Cite:

Youn, S. & Rana, M., (2022) “Feeling Disconnected: Protection Motivation and Acceptance of Online Shopping During COVID-19”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 78(1). doi:

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Published on
15 Sep 2022
Peer Reviewed