How Product Differentiation Affects Online Shopping
Online product comparison sites aid consumers in making purchase decisions by providing information regarding product attributes, reviews and retailers. Despite the enormous research on information processing and consumer behavior, little has been directed at investigating how information display impacts online purchase choices. Cognitive theory is used to evaluate whether the order in which consumers receive information influence their decision making. An experiment with 60 participants was performed. Results indicate that no order effects mediated choice among alternatives with equal utility. However, preference was observed for a particular type of product. While all the products had the same overall rating, this product had both a larger number of high and low ratings. It is suggested that this was a sufficient condition to differentiate the product listed in this position from the other products.
Keywordsconsumer choice product differentiation order bias
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