If You Let Them Build It, They Will Stay! An Empirical Study of Add-on Content and User Engagement

Irfan Kanat, Kevin Hong, Bin Gu, T. S. Raghu

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This study aims to uncover the effects of two types of add-on content –namely, user generated and developer generated content– on user engagement with software. Utilizing a novel dataset from a major online game distribution platform covering 7323 products between January 2015 and February 2016, the findings reveal that both types of add-on content increases the engagement with software. However, we observe substitutive patterns between different types of add-on content. Our results suggest integrating social features to the base product reduces these substitution effects. The results of this study contribute to the literatures on user engagement and add-on content by uncovering hitherto overlooked substitutive relations between user generated and developer generated add-on content.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 50th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
Number of pages9
PublisherAssociation for Information Systems. AIS Electronic Library (AISeL)
Publication date2017
ISBN (Print)9780998133102
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event50th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2017 - Waikoloa Village, United States
Duration: 4 Jan 20177 Jan 2017
Conference number: 50


Conference50th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, HICSS 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityWaikoloa Village
Internet address


  • Online games
  • Add-on content
  • User engagement
  • Digital economy

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