ArticlePDF Available

The effect of context attractiveness on product attractiveness and product quality: the moderating role of product familiarity

Authors:

Abstract and Figures

Prior research has investigated a number of drivers of consumers’ perceived product attractiveness, such as a product’s shape and color. The context, in which a product is presented, has so far been largely neglected in examining consumers’ aesthetic appraisal of products. Drawing on social cognition theory, this research investigates how the attractiveness of the visual context (e.g., websites, advertisements) influences consumers’ perceptions of product attractiveness and product quality for familiar versus unfamiliar products. Results of two experimental studies show that consumers perceive unfamiliar products as more attractive and, consequently, of higher quality when products are placed in an attractive context than when they are placed in an unattractive context. No differences in consumers’ perceived product attractiveness and perceived product quality exist for familiar products. The findings extend our theoretical knowledge of product aesthetics and provide managers with insights into the effective communication of their offerings’ attractiveness.
This content is subject to copyright. Terms and conditions apply.
The effect of context attractiveness on product
attractiveness and product quality: the moderating role
of product familiarity
Benedikt Schnurr
1
&Alexandra Brunner-Sperdin
2
&
Nicola E. Stokburger-Sauer
1
Published online: 9 August 2016
#The Author(s) 2016. This article is published with open access at Springerlink.com
Abstract Prior research has investigated a number of drivers of consumersperceived
product attractiveness, such as a products shape and color. The context, in which a product
is presented, has so far been largely neglected in examining consumersaesthetic appraisal
of products. Drawing on social cognition theory, this research investigates how the attrac-
tiveness of the visual context (e.g., websites, advertisements) influences consumersper-
ceptions of product attractiveness and product quality for familiar versus unfamiliar prod-
ucts. Results of two experimental studies show that consumers perceive unfamiliar products
as more attractive and, consequently, of higher quality when products are placed in an
attractive context than when they are placed in an unattractive context. No differences in
consumersperceived product attractiveness and perceived product quality exist for familiar
products. The findings extend our theoretical knowledge of product aesthetics and provide
managers with insights into the effective communication of their offeringsattractiveness.
Keywords Context effects .Product attractiveness .Product quality .Product familiarity
1 Introduction
Just as consumers ascribe personality traits, for example social skills and competence, to
other people based on their physical attractiveness (Dion et al. 1972; Goldman and Lewis
1977), consumers also make inferences about product attributes based on a productsvisual
appeal (Bloch 1995; Creusen and Schoormans 2005). While past research provides solid
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
DOI 10.1007/s11002-016-9404-3
*Benedikt Schnurr
benedikt.schnurr@uibk.ac.at
1
Department of Strategic Management, Marketing, and Tourism, University of Innsbruck,
Universitaetsstr. 15, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
2
Department of Marketing, University of Applied Sciences in Kufstein, Andreas Hofer-Straße 7,
6330 Kufstein, Austria
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
knowledge on the design factors that make products more or less attractive (Blijlevens et al.
2011; Veryzer and Hutchinson 1998), it has neglected to examine the influence of the
context, in which a product is presented, on consumersaesthetic appraisal of products.
This is surprising considering the fact that products are always perceived in some kind of
context, be it a website, an advertisement, a store, or consumershomes. Consequently,
knowing how the context affects consumersperceptions of products certainly helps
companies to display them in a manner that makes them appear most attractive.
The objective of this research is to theoretically and empirically examine context
effects in consumersaesthetic appraisal of products. Specifically, by drawing on social
cognition theory (Mussweiler 2003; Schwarz and Bless 1992), we investigate whether
consumers perceive products as more or less attractive depending on the attractiveness
of the visual context in which the products are presented. Further, we explore whether
perceived product attractiveness subsequently affects consumersperceptions of prod-
uct quality. In a first experiment, we investigate these context effects using more and
less attractive websites. In a second experiment, we validate and extend the results
using print advertisements as contexts and, additionally, examine whether higher
ratings of product attractiveness translate into higher purchase intentions.
2 Conceptual background
2.1 Context effects and product attractiveness
Research in cognitive psychology has successfully demonstrated that the context
affects consumersperceptions of target stimuli (Bless and Schwarz 2010; Lee and
Suk 2010). Context effects describe processes of consumersstimulus perceptions that
are affected by the environment in which the stimulus is perceived. The concept of
cognitive accessibility explains the circumstances under which consumers use contex-
tual information in order to interpret and evaluate a target stimulus. The basic notion of
this concept is that the more cognitively accessible information is, the more likely that
information is to affect the perception of the target stimulus (Stapel 2007).
The use of information that consumers retrieve from the context in forming an impression
about a target stimulus may result in two opposing effects. When the context information is
used as a comparison standard, consumers compare the features of the target stimulus with the
features of the context and judge the target stimulus in the opposite direction to the contexta
contrast effect occurs. When the context information is used as an interpretation frame, it helps
to make sense of the target stimulus, and consumers judge the target stimulus in the same
direction to the contextan assimilation effect occurs. Whether a contrast effect or an
assimilation effect occurs depends on both the characteristics of the context and the target
stimulus.
2.1.1 Contrast effects
For contrast effects to occur, two conditions need to be met. First, the context and the
target stimulus need to belong to the same category (Mussweiler 2003). For example,
consumers are likely to compare the elegance of one restaurant with the elegance of
another restaurant, while they are unlikely to compare the elegance of a restaurant with
242 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
the elegance of a clothing store (Meyers-Levy and Sternthal 1993). Similarly, when a
target product is placed among other products on a website or in an advertisement,
consumers are likely to compare the attractiveness of this target product with the
attractiveness of the other products but not with the attractiveness of the website or
the advertisement. In the latter case, the context and the target stimulus do not belong to
the same category, and consumers will not compare the attributes associated with the
context against the attributes associated with the target stimulus (Mussweiler 2003).
Second, the context needs to be highly distinct from the target stimulus (Stapel
2007). Only if the attribute that consumers associate with the context is primed in the
extreme opposite direction from the attribute that consumers associate with the target
stimulus, consumers are likely to use the context as a comparison standard and judge
the target stimulus in the opposite direction to the context. When both conditions are
met, a positive context leads to a negative evaluation of the target stimulus, while a
negative context leads to a positive evaluation of the target stimulus. Investigating
facial attractiveness ratings, Wedell et al. (1987) showed that consumers judge the same
faces as more attractive when they are presented in a context with less attractive faces.
In the present research, we do not expect contrast effects to occur because the first
condition (context and target stimulus belong to the same category) is not satisfied.
2.1.2 Assimilation effects
For assimilation effects to occur, the following conditions need to be met. First, the target
stimulus needs to be rather ambiguous or unfamiliar (Lee and Suk 2010). In this case, the
target stimulus is open to various interpretations, and consumers are likely to transfer the
attributes associated with the context to the target stimulus. Second, the type of information
that is made accessible through the context has to be relevant for interpreting the target
stimulus (Mussweiler 2003;Stapeletal.1998). Thus, the attributes that consumers associate
with the context need to be transferable to the target stimulus. When both conditions are met,
a positive context leads to a positive evaluation of the target stimulus, while a negative
context leads to a negative evaluation of the target stimulus. In the context of art, Kirk et al.
(2009) showed that consumers evaluate paintings labeled as belonging to an art museum
more positively than paintings labeled as being computer generated by the experimenter.
Following this reasoning, we expect the occurrence of assimilation effects to be moderated
by consumersproduct familiarity, which is defined as Bthe number of product-related expe-
riences that have been accumulated by the consumer^(Alba and Hutchinson 1987,p.411).
Specifically, we propose that assimilation effects occur for unfamiliar products, but not for
familiar products. When consumers are highly familiar with a product, they have encountered
numerous products and gained experience in appreciating various product appearances. Thus,
consumers are able to interpret the attractiveness of a familiar product independently from the
context in which the product is presented. However, when consumers encounter a product they
are unfamiliar with or have even never seen before, they have no prior experience with the
product and, thus, lack the ability to judge the products attractiveness. Thus, consumers may
use the attractiveness of the visual context in forming an impression about the products
attractiveness leading to assimilation effects. Thus, we hypothesize:
H1: When consumers are unfamiliar with the product, they perceive the product
as more attractive when the product is placed in an attractive context than when
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 243
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
the product is placed in an unattractive context. When consumers are familiar
with the product, no differences in perceived product attractiveness occur.
2.2 Product attractiveness and product quality
Consumers make inferences about numerous product attributes, including func-
tional attributes such as product quality, through a products visual appearance
(Bloch 1995; Creusen and Schoormans 2005). A positive relationship between
stimulus attractiveness and product quality has been found in several contexts
such as websites (Wang et al. 2011) and retail stores (Richardson et al. 1996).
In fact, attractiveness and quality are directly related through the Bwhat is
beautiful is good^stereotype (Dion et al. 1972). Researchers have shown that
attractive people are more positively evaluated in terms of social skills
(Goldman and Lewis 1977) and are believed to be more competent and
successful (Dion et al. 1972) compared to less attractive people. Further, in
an advertising context, a spill-over effect exists in which physically attractive
testimonials used in advertisements lead to more positive perceptions of product
quality than physically less attractive testimonials (Petroshius and Crocker
1989).
In this research, we expect that consumersperceptions of product attractiveness posi-
tively influence their perceptions of product quality. When consumers are not provided with
any other information about a product and when consumers have no prior experience in
using the product, the products visual appearance serves as an extrinsic cue that facilitates
consumersjudgments of product quality (Garber et al. 2000). As suggested above, the
attractiveness of the context, in which a product is presented, affects consumersperceived
product attractiveness for unfamiliar products, but not for familiar products. We propose:
H2: When consumers are unfamiliar with the product, they perceive the product
quality as higher when the product is placed in an attractive context than when the
product is placed in an unattractive context. When consumers are familiar with
the product, no differences in perceived product quality occur.
H3: The interactive effect of context attractiveness and product familiarity on
perceived product quality is mediated by perceived product attractiveness.
3Study1
3.1 Method
3.1.1 Participants and design
A total of 194 students from a European university participated voluntarily in study 1
(135 female, M
age
= 24.63). Participants were randomly assigned to a 2 (unattractive vs.
attractive website) × 2 (unfamiliar vs. familiar product) between-subjects design.
244 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
3.1.2 Stimuli
To create the stimuli, two pretests were conducted. In the first pretest, 59 participants
(31 female, M
age
= 23.60) rated their familiarity with 30 products from various catego-
ries on the items by Roehm and Sternthal (2001). Results indicated to use a pineapple
slicer as the unfamiliar product and a cooking pot as the familiar product (M
pineapple
slicer
=2.58, M
cooking pot
=6.37, p<0.01).
In the second pretest, 52 participants (33 female, M
age
= 24.83) were randomly assigned
to a 2 (unattractive vs. attractive website) × 2 (unfamiliar vs. familiar product) design. The
first factor was manipulated between participants and the latter within participants. We
created two screenshots of a fictitious online retailer. Literature shows that attractive
websites are high in classical and expressive aesthetics, whereas unattractive websites
are low in both aesthetic dimensions (Tractinsky et al. 2006). While classical aesthetics
refers to the clarity and order of the web design, expressive aesthetics refers to the richness
and creativity of the web design. In line with previous literature (Cai and Xu 2011;Wang
et al. 2011), we manipulated the websitesclassical aesthetics by varying the logical
organization of different website elements as well as the legibility of font type. We
manipulated expressive aesthetics by using different text and background color combina-
tions. We did not make any changes in terms of content between the two websites. The
participants rated the screenshots on the 9-item classical/expressive web aesthetics scale
(Cai and Xu 2011). Further, the participants rated how realistic they found the website (BI
can imagine that this website really exists^and BI have seen a website like this before^)
and the content of the website based on Zhang and von Dran (2001)(BThe level of
information on this website is appropriate^and BThe content of this website is relevant^).
Results of a 2 × 2 MANOVA showed only significant main effects for website attractive-
ness, while all main effects for product familiarity as well as all interaction effects were not
significant (all p> 0.300). We therefore merged the data across the two different products.
A MANOVA revealed that the attractive websites were perceived higher in terms of
both classical aesthetics (M
attractive
=4.71,M
unattractive
=2.99,p< 0.001) and expressive
aesthetics (M
attractive
=3.03,M
unattractive
=1.20,p< 0.001) than the unattractive website.
Further, the two websites did not differ significantly in terms of how realistic they were
perceived (M
unattractive
=3.92, M
attractive
=4.40, p> 0.10) and in terms of website con-
tent (M
unattractive
=3.92,M
attractive
=3.40,p> 0.10). These results show that our manip-
ulation of website attractiveness did not affect participantsperceptions of the websites
realism or content. We, thus, used the two websites (see Fig. 1) as our final stimuli.
3.1.3 Measurement
After processing the stimulus, participants indicated their perceptions of product quality
on the items provided by Dodds et al. (1991)(BThis product seems to be very reliable,^
BThe manufacturing quality of this product seems very high,^BThe quality of this
product is very high,^BThis product seems to be very dependable,^and BThis product
is likely to be durable^;α= 0.91). Perceived product attractiveness was measured using
the items by Page and Herr (2002)(Bunattractive/attractive^and Bnot beautiful/
beautiful^). As a manipulation check, the participants indicated the websitesclassical
(α= 0.78) and expressive aesthetics (α= 0.96), the degree of realism of the website (BI
have seen a website like this before^), as well their familiarity with the product.
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 245
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
3.2 Results
3.2.1 Manipulation check
The attractive websites were rated higher than the unattractive websites in terms of
classical aesthetics (M
attractive
=5.49, M
unattractive
=3.59,p< 0.001) and expressive aes-
thetics (M
attractive
=4.49, M
attractive
=1.66, p< 0.001). There were no significant differ-
ences in the degree of realism between the websites (M
attractive
=4.02, M
unattractive
=
3.54, p> 0.10). Further, the participants reported higher familiarity with the familiar
product than with the unfamiliar product (M
familiar
=6.49,M
unfamiliar
=2.75,p<0.001).
Fig. 1 Familiar product placed on attractive website (top) and unfamiliar product placed on unattractive
website (bottom)
246 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
3.2.2 Perceived product attractiveness
A 2 × 2 ANOVA with website attractiveness and product familiarity as indepen-
dent variables on perceived product attractiveness revealed a significant main
effect for website attractiveness (F(1,192) = 13.67, p< 0.001) while the effect
for product familiarity was not significant (F(1,192) = 0.043, p>0.10). The
interaction between website attractiveness and product familiarity reached sig-
nificance (F(1,192) = 6.25, p< 0.05). As predicted in H1, the participants per-
ceived the unfamiliar product as more attractive when it was placed on the
attractive website than when it was placed on the unattractive website
(M
attractive
= 5.51, M
unattractive
=4.55, p< 0.001). No difference was found for
the familiar product (M
attractive
= 5.16, M
unattractive
=4.97, p>0.10).
3.2.3 Perceived product quality
A 2 × 2 ANOVA on perceived product quality produced a significant main effect for
website attractiveness (F(1,192) = 7.26, p< 0.01). The effect for product familiarity was
not significant (F(1,192) = 1.03, p> 0.10); the interaction reached significance
(F(1,192) = 4.25, p< 0.05). Supporting H2, the participants rated the quality of the
unfamiliar product as higher when the product was placed on the attractive website than
when it was placed on the unattractive website (M
attractive
=4.47, M
unattractive
=3.64,
p< 0.01). No difference existed for the familiar product (M
attractive
=4.28,M
unattractive
=
4.17, p>0.10).
3.2.4 Moderated mediation analysis
To examine whether the interactive effect of website attractiveness and product
familiarity on perceived product quality is mediated by perceived product
attractiveness, we employed the methodology for testing moderated mediation
suggested by Preacher et al. (2007) using the bootstrapping procedure (n=
5000). Results indicated the presence of a moderated mediation (CI
95 %
=0.85,
0.11), thus supporting H3. Specifically, perceived product attractiveness medi-
ated the relationship between website attractiveness and perceived product
quality for the unfamiliar product (CI
95 %
= 0.24, 0.87), but not for the familiar
product (CI
95 %
=0.11, 0.29).
3.3 Discussion
Study 1 demonstrates that the perceptions of product attractiveness of con-
sumers who are unfamiliar with a product are greatly affected by the visual
appeal of the context in which the product is presented. Further, this increase in
perceptions of product attractiveness leads to an increase in perceptions of
product quality. When consumers are familiar with the product, the context
does not affect consumersperceptions of either product attractiveness or
product quality.
To validate and extend these findings, we made three critical changes in
study 2. First, while websites served as the context in study 1, we chose print
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 247
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
advertisements in study 2 to show that assimilation effects appear both in an
online and offline context. Second, while European students served as the
participants in study 1, American consumers were the participants in study 2.
Further, in addition to investigating the effects on perceived product quality, we
included a measure of purchase intention in study 2.
4Study2
4.1 Product attractiveness and purchase intention
Consumersperceptions of product attractiveness influence their behavioral responses
towards a product, which are typically described by avoidance or approach (Crilly et al.
2004; Bloch 1995). When a product elicits rather positive perceptions of attractiveness,
consumers are likely to engage in approach behavior, such as spending additional time
looking at the product or willingness to buy it. In this research, we suggest that
consumersincreased perceptions of product attractiveness translate into higher inten-
tions to purchase the product.
H4: When consumers are unfamiliar with the product, their intentions to
purchase the product are higher when the product is placed in an attrac-
tive context than when the product is placed in an unattractive context.
When consumers are familiar with the product, no differences in purchase
intentions occur.
H5: The interactive effect of context attractiveness and product familiarity on
purchase intention is mediated by perceived product attractiveness.
4.2 Method
4.2.1 Participants and design
A total of 200 US consumers, recruited via Mechanical Turk, participated in study 2 (84
female, M
age
= 35.98). The participants were randomly assigned to a 2 (unattractive vs.
attractive ad) × 2 (unfamiliar vs. familiar product) between-subjects design.
4.2.2 Stimuli
Similar to study 1, two pretests were conducted. In the first pretest, 37 participants (15
female, M
age
= 34.39) rated their familiarity with 16 products from different product
categories. In order to use products from the same product category, we chose the
pineapple slicer as the unfamiliar product and the toaster as the familiar product
(M
pineapple slicer
=2.43, M
toaster
=5.96, p<0.01).
In the second pretest, 189 participants (84 female, M
age
= 38.75) were randomly
assigned to a 2 (unattractive vs. attractive ad) × 2 (unfamiliar vs. familiar product)
between-subjects design. A professional graphic designer created the advertisements by
248 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
varying the degree of classical and expressive aesthetics. The participants rated the
advertisements on the 9-item classical/expressive aesthetics scale (Cai and Xu 2011),
which was adapted to the advertisement context. Further, the participants rated the
content of the advertisement as well as the believability of the advertisement based on
the items by Gürhan-Canli and Maheswaran (2000). Results of a 2 × 2 MANOVA only
revealed significant main effects for ad attractiveness, while all main effects for product
familiarity as well as all interaction effects were not significant (all p>0.200). We
therefore merged the data across the two different products.
A MANOVA showed that the attractive advertisements scored higher in terms of
both classical aesthetics (M
attractive
=4.43,M
unattractive
=3.73,p< 0.001) and expressive
aesthetics (M
attractive
=4.69, M
unattractive
=3.16, p< 0.001) than the unattractive adver-
tisements. Further, the advertisements did not differ in terms of content (M
unattractive
=
4.06, M
attractive
=4.14, p> 0.10) and believability (M
attractive
=4.95, M
unattractive
=4.62,
p> 0.10). These results show that our manipulation of advertisement attractiveness did
not affect participantsperceptions of content or believability. Further, mean values of
above 4.50 for ad believability suggest that our stimuli show acceptable external
validity. We, thus, used the two advertisements as our final stimuli (see Fig. 2).
4.2.3 Measurement
The same measures as in study 1 were used to assess perceived product quality
(α= 0.96) and perceived product attractiveness. Additionally, the participants indicated
how likely they would purchase the product from 1(Bvery unlikely^)to7(Bvery
Fig. 2 Attractive advertisement for familiar product (left) and unattractive advertisement for unfamiliar
product (right)
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 249
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
likely^). Finally, the participants assed the advertisementsclassical(α= 0.91) and
expressive aesthetics (α= 0.97), the degree of realism of the ad, as well as their
familiarity with the product on the same items used in study 1.
4.3 Results
4.3.1 Manipulation check
The attractive advertisements were rated higher than the unattractive advertisements in
terms of classical aesthetics (M
attractive
=4.94,M
unattractive
=4.01,p< 0.001) and expressive
aesthetics (M
attractive
=4.81,M
unattractive
=3.39,p< 0.001). Also, there were no differences
in the degree of realism between the advertisements (M
attractive
=2.71,M
unattractive
=2.34,
p> 0.10). Further, the participants reported higher familiarity with the familiar product
than with the unfamiliar product (M
familiar
=5.62, M
unfamiliar
=2.39,p<0.001).
4.3.2 Perceived product attractiveness
A 2 × 2 ANOVA with advertisement attractiveness and product familiarity as indepen-
dent variables on perceived product attractiveness revealed a non-significant main
effect for product familiarity (F(1,198) = 0.428, p> 0.10) and a significant main effect
for ad attractiveness (F(1,198) = 7.98, p< 0.01). The interaction between ad attractive-
ness and product familiarity reached significance (F(1,198) = 12.57, p< 0.001). Con-
gruent with H1, the participants perceived the unfamiliar product as more attractive
when it was shown in the attractive advertisement than when it was shown in the
unattractive advertisement (M
attractive
=5.65, M
unattractive
=4.54, p< 0.001). No differ-
ence was found for the familiar product (M
attractive
=5.15, M
unattractive
=5.27, p>0.10).
4.3.3 Perceived product quality
A 2 × 2 ANOVA on perceived product quality revealed significant main effects for
product familiarity (F(1,1981) = 2.93, p< 0.10) and ad attractiveness (F(1,198) = 5.71,
p< 0.05). Further, the interaction was significant (F(1,198) = 3.98, p< 0.05). In support
of H2, the participants rated the quality of the unfamiliar product higher when the
product was shown in the attractive advertisement than when it was shown in the
unattractive advertisement (M
attractive
=5.61, M
unattractive
=5.03, p< 0.01). No difference
existed for the familiar product (M
attractive
=5.12,M
unattractive
=5.07, p>0.10).
4.3.4 Purchase intention
A 2 × 2 ANOVA on purchase intention produced a significant main effect for product
familiarity (F(1,198) = 4.89, p< 0.05) while the effect for ad attractiveness did not
reach significance (F(1,198) = 1.41, p> 0.10). The interaction turned out to be signif-
icant (F(1,198) = 6.21, p< 0.05). Supporting H4, the participants indicated a higher
purchase intention for the unfamiliar product when the product was shown in the
attractive advertisement than when it was shown in the unattractive advertisement
(M
attractive
=4.59, M
unattractive
=3.67, p< 0.05). No effect was found for the familiar
product (M
attractive
=4.52, M
unattractive
=4.84,p>0.10).
250 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
4.3.5 Moderated mediation analyses
To test for the existence of a moderated mediation, we applied the same procedure as in
study 1. Including perceived product quality as the dependent variable, results indicated
the presence of a moderated mediation (CI
95 %
=0.82, 0.22), supporting H3. Spe-
cifically, perceived product attractiveness mediated the relationship between ad attrac-
tiveness and perceived product quality for the unfamiliar product (CI
95 %
= 0.25, 0.68),
but not for the familiar product (CI
95 %
=0.27, 0.15).
To test H5, we included purchase intention as the dependent variable. Results
revealed the presence of a moderated mediation (CI
95 %
=1.662, 0.48). Perceived
product attractiveness mediated the relationship between ad attractiveness and purchase
intention for the unfamiliar product (CI
95 %
= 0.55, 1.14), but not for the familiar
product (CI
95 %
=0.53, 0.31).
5 General discussion
In the two studies with different contexts and different consumers, we showed that the
consumers who are unfamiliar with a product perceive the product as more attractive
and, consequently, of higher quality when the product is placed in an attractive context
than when it is placed in an unattractive context. Further, the higher ratings of product
attractiveness translate into higher intentions to purchase the product. When the
consumers are familiar with the product, no differences between the attractive and
unattractive context exist.
Our findings make important contributions to the literature. First, we provide
evidence for the existence of assimilation effects in consumersaesthetic appraisal of
products. While previous studies have mainly focused on the relationship between
product form and consumersaesthetic appraisal, our results suggest that when the
consumers are unfamiliar with a product, they take the attractiveness of the context, in
which the product is presented, into account when judging the productsattractiveness.
Second, we contribute to Blochs(1995) theoretical propositions by empirically show-
ing that consumersresponses to a products visual appearance are influenced by the
context in which the product is perceived. Third, our results provide empirical proof for
the Bwhat is beautiful is good^stereotype (Dion et al. 1972) in a consumer product
context. In both the experiments, perceived product attractiveness had a positive effect
on perceived product quality.
From a managerial perspective, our findings assist marketers to more effectively
position their products and to communicate their productsvisual appeal. Specifically,
we show that a visually appealing context is more important when consumers are
unfamiliar, rather than familiar, with products. When the consumers are unfamiliar with
products, they perceive products more attractive when the products are placed in a
visually appealing context. This situation may occur when radically new products are
launched, when companies seek to target new customer segments, when buying a gift
for someone else, or when parents want to buy something for their children. In these
situations, it is critical for marketers to present their offerings in a context that is as
visually appealing as possible, be it a website, an advertisement, or a department store.
For example, when companies launch new products, which are unfamiliar to
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 251
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
consumers, these companies may profit from using advertisements with superior
aesthetic appeal. Likewise, such companies could use an aesthetically appealing con-
text in order to compensate for a possible lack of experience and expertise in producing
products with a superior visual design.
Despite these advances, our research has limitations that suggest directions for future
research. First, we limited our research to the investigation of assimilation effects in
consumersaesthetic appraisal of products. A recent study by Blijlevens et al. (2012)
provides evidence that consumers perceive typical products as more typical when
presented in an atypical context than when presented in a typical context. It would be
interesting to investigate whether consumers judge an attractive product as more
attractive when the product is placed among unattractive products than when it is
placed among attractive products. Second, we limited the context to websites and
advertisements. Researchers should investigate the effects with products placed in other
contexts, for example retail stores. Third, it is likely that personality characteristics
moderate the existence of assimilation effects. For example, consumers with a high
centrality of visual product aesthetics (CVPA; Bloch et al. 2003) might be less
influenced by the attractiveness of the context compared to those with a low CVPA.
Likewise, the effect might be moderated by the product category, such that it is stronger
for hedonic products for which aesthetics is of great importance to consumers (e.g.,
clothing, furniture), compared to utilitarian products for which aesthetics is only of
minor importance (e.g., tooth paste, batteries).
Acknowledgements Open access funding provided by University of Innsbruck and Medical University of
Innsbruck.
Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and repro-
duction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) andthe source, provide a
link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
References
Alba, J. W., & Hutchinson, J. W. (1987). Dimensions of consumer expertise. Journal of Consumer Research,
13(4), 411454.
Bless, H., & Schwarz, N. (2010). Mental construal and the emergence of assimilation and contrast effects: the
inclusion/exclusion model. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 42,319373.
Blijlevens, J., Carbon, C.-C., Mugge, R., & Schoormans, J. P. L. (2011). Aesthetic appraisal of product
designs: independent effects of typicality and arousal. British Journal of Psychology, 103(1), 4457.
Blijlevens, J., Gemser, G., & Mugge, R. (2012). The importance of being Bwell-placed^: the influence of
context on perceived typicality and esthetic appraisal of product appearance. Acta Psychologica, 139(1),
178186.
Bloch, P. H. (1995). Seeking the ideal form: product design and consumer response. Journal of Marketing,
59(3), 1629.
Bloch, P. H., Brunel, F. F., Arnold, T. J. (2003). Individual differences in the centrality of visual product
aesthetics: concept and measurement. Journal of Consumer Research, 29(4), 551565.
Cai, S., & Xu, Y. (2011). Designing not just for pleasure: effects of web site aesthetics on consumer shopping
value. International Journal of Electronic Commerce, 15(4), 159188.
Creusen, M. E. H., & Schoormans, J. P. L. (2005). The different roles of product appearance in consumer
choice. Journal of Product Innovation Management, 22(1), 6381.
252 Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
Crilly, N., Moultrie, J., & Clarkson, P. J. (2004). Seeing things: consumer response to the visual domain in
product design. Design Studies, 25(6), 547577.
Dion, K., Berscheid, E., & Walster, E. (1972). What is beautiful is good. Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, 24(3), 285290.
Dodds, W. B., Monroe, K. B., & Grewal, D. (1991). Effects of price, brand, and store information on buyers
product evaluations. Journal of Marketing Research, 28(3), 307319.
Garber, L. L., Hyatt, E. M., & Starr, R. G. (2000). The effects of food color on perceived flavor. Journal of
Marketing Theory and Practice, 8(4), 5972.
Goldman, W., & Lewis, P. (1977). Beautiful is good: evidence that the physically attractive are more socially
skillful. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 13(2), 125130.
Gürhan-Canli, Z., & Maheswaran, D. (2000). Determinants of country-of-origin evaluations. Journal of
Consumer Research, 27(1), 96108.
Kirk, U., Skov, M., Hulme, O., Christensen, M. S., & Zeki, S. (2009). Modulation of aesthetic value by
semantic context: an fMRI study. NeuroImage, 44(3), 11251132.
Lee, M. P., & Suk, K. (2010). Disambiguating the role of ambiguity in perceptual assimilation and contrast
effects. Journal of Consumer Research, 36(5), 890897.
Meyers-Levy, J., & Sternthal, B. (1993). A two-factor explanation of assimilation and contrast effects. Journal
of Marketing Research, 30(3), 359368.
Mussweiler, T. (2003). Comparison processes in social judgment: mechanisms and consequences.
Psychological Review, 110(3), 472489.
Page, C., & Herr, P. M. (2002). An investigation of the processes by which product design and brand strength
interact to determine initial affect and quality judgments. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 12(2), 133
147.
Petroshius, S. M., & Crocker, K. E. (1989). An empirical analysis of spokesperson characteristics on
advertisement and product evaluations. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 17(3), 217225.
Preacher, K. J., Rucker, D. D., & Hayes, A. F. (2007). Addressing moderated mediation hypotheses: theory,
methods, and prescriptions. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 42(1), 185227.
Richardson, P., Jain, A. K., & Dick, A. (1996). The influence of store aesthetics on evaluation of private label
brands. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 5(1), 1928.
Roehm, M. L., & Sternthal, B. (2001). The moderating effect of knowledge and resources on the persuasive
impact of analogies. Journal of Consumer Research, 28(2), 257272.
Schwarz, N., & Bless, H. (1992). Constructing reality and its alternatives: an inclusion/exclusion model of
assimilation and contrast effects in social judgment. In M. L. Leonard & A. Tessa (Eds.), The construction
of social judgments. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.
Stapel, D. A. (2007). In the mind of the beholder: the interpretation comparison model of accessibility effects.
In D. A. Stapel & J. Suls (Eds.), Assimilation and contrast in social psychology. New York: Psychology
Press.
Stapel, D. A., Koomen, W., & Velthuijsen, A. S. (1998). Assimilation or contrast?: comparison relevance,
distinctness, and the impact of accessible information on consumer judgments. J
ournalofConsumer
Psychology, 7(1), 124.
Tractinsky, N., Cokhavi, A., Kirschenbaum, M., & Sharfi, T. (2006). Evaluating the consistency of immediate
aesthetic perceptions of web pages. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 64(11), 1071
1083.
Veryzer, R. W., & Hutchinson, J. W. (1998). The influence of unity and prototypicality on aesthetic responses
to new product designs. Journal of Consumer Research, 24(4), 374394.
Wang, Y. J., Minor, M. S., & Wei, J. (2011). Aesthetics and the online shopping environment: understanding
consumer responses. Journal of Retailing, 87(1), 4658.
Wedell, D. H., Parducci, A., & Geiselman, R. E. (1987). A formal analysis of ratingsof physical attractiveness:
successive contrast and simultaneous assimilation. JournalofExperimentalSocialPsychology,23(3),
230249.
Zhang, P., & von Dran, G. M. (2001). User expectations and rankings of quality factors in different web site
domains. International Journal of Electronic Commerce, 6(2), 933.
Mark Lett (2017) 28:241253 253
Content courtesy of Springer Nature, terms of use apply. Rights reserved.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Terms and Conditions
Springer Nature journal content, brought to you courtesy of Springer Nature Customer Service Center
GmbH (“Springer Nature”).
Springer Nature supports a reasonable amount of sharing of research papers by authors, subscribers
and authorised users (“Users”), for small-scale personal, non-commercial use provided that all
copyright, trade and service marks and other proprietary notices are maintained. By accessing,
sharing, receiving or otherwise using the Springer Nature journal content you agree to these terms of
use (“Terms”). For these purposes, Springer Nature considers academic use (by researchers and
students) to be non-commercial.
These Terms are supplementary and will apply in addition to any applicable website terms and
conditions, a relevant site licence or a personal subscription. These Terms will prevail over any
conflict or ambiguity with regards to the relevant terms, a site licence or a personal subscription (to
the extent of the conflict or ambiguity only). For Creative Commons-licensed articles, the terms of
the Creative Commons license used will apply.
We collect and use personal data to provide access to the Springer Nature journal content. We may
also use these personal data internally within ResearchGate and Springer Nature and as agreed share
it, in an anonymised way, for purposes of tracking, analysis and reporting. We will not otherwise
disclose your personal data outside the ResearchGate or the Springer Nature group of companies
unless we have your permission as detailed in the Privacy Policy.
While Users may use the Springer Nature journal content for small scale, personal non-commercial
use, it is important to note that Users may not:
use such content for the purpose of providing other users with access on a regular or large scale
basis or as a means to circumvent access control;
use such content where to do so would be considered a criminal or statutory offence in any
jurisdiction, or gives rise to civil liability, or is otherwise unlawful;
falsely or misleadingly imply or suggest endorsement, approval , sponsorship, or association
unless explicitly agreed to by Springer Nature in writing;
use bots or other automated methods to access the content or redirect messages
override any security feature or exclusionary protocol; or
share the content in order to create substitute for Springer Nature products or services or a
systematic database of Springer Nature journal content.
In line with the restriction against commercial use, Springer Nature does not permit the creation of a
product or service that creates revenue, royalties, rent or income from our content or its inclusion as
part of a paid for service or for other commercial gain. Springer Nature journal content cannot be
used for inter-library loans and librarians may not upload Springer Nature journal content on a large
scale into their, or any other, institutional repository.
These terms of use are reviewed regularly and may be amended at any time. Springer Nature is not
obligated to publish any information or content on this website and may remove it or features or
functionality at our sole discretion, at any time with or without notice. Springer Nature may revoke
this licence to you at any time and remove access to any copies of the Springer Nature journal content
which have been saved.
To the fullest extent permitted by law, Springer Nature makes no warranties, representations or
guarantees to Users, either express or implied with respect to the Springer nature journal content and
all parties disclaim and waive any implied warranties or warranties imposed by law, including
merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose.
Please note that these rights do not automatically extend to content, data or other material published
by Springer Nature that may be licensed from third parties.
If you would like to use or distribute our Springer Nature journal content to a wider audience or on a
regular basis or in any other manner not expressly permitted by these Terms, please contact Springer
Nature at
onlineservice@springernature.com
... The attractiveness of a product is defined as the degree to which the product value is perceived by consumers [22]. Based on prior studies, factors affecting product attractiveness can be: functional value (commodity quality [23], core functions [24]), cost value (price, promotion [25]), service value (service quality [26], personnel [26], context [23]), and design value (form design [13], aesthetics [27], visual appeal [28,29]). Under the Internet celebrity economy, the dissemination value (Internet celebrity marketing [30]) and Internet celebrity value (celebrity effect [31]) can also be involved. ...
... The attractiveness of a product is defined as the degree to which the product value is perceived by consumers [22]. Based on prior studies, factors affecting product attractiveness can be: functional value (commodity quality [23], core functions [24]), cost value (price, promotion [25]), service value (service quality [26], personnel [26], context [23]), and design value (form design [13], aesthetics [27], visual appeal [28,29]). Under the Internet celebrity economy, the dissemination value (Internet celebrity marketing [30]) and Internet celebrity value (celebrity effect [31]) can also be involved. ...
... These factors are shown in Fig. 1 Practical Value. Practical value of Internet celebrity products includes product functional value [23,24,33,34], cost value [25,33,35,36], and service value [23,26,33,37]. It can mainly be reflected through function utility value, positively affecting customer satisfaction and behavior [38]. ...
Chapter
In this study, we developed an instrument to measure the attractiveness of Internet celebrity products. An online survey was conducted on 306 consumers (mean age = 24 years). Via exploratory factor analysis and regression analysis, a model of the attractiveness source of Internet celebrity products was constructed based on the survey and interview. The results showed that the attractiveness of Internet celebrity products was mainly affected by products’ practical value, hedonic value, and Internet celebrity product purchase experience, with regression coefficients of 0.710, 0.164, and 0.193, respectively. This instrument offers a method to understand what attributes of Internet celebrity products attract consumers. Targeted optimization suggestions were also presented for product providers and consumers.
... Any company can offer its products most attractively, but it is crucial to comprehend how customers perceive the products. (Schnurr et al., 2017). However, there are situations in which a product is heavily advertised, but the result is an unfavorable customer perception owing to the company's use of religiosity and racism. ...
... This study indicates a significant relationship between customers' perception and purchase intention and the findings has been supported by (Alalwan, 2018). Customers who are unfamiliar with a brand or product are always attracted by the product's physical appearance (Schnurr et al., 2017). Due to the principle of first impression, it is vital for a company to boost the product's attractiveness since this will increase the customers' perception of the product's quality, hence influencing their purchase intention (Wang & Hsu, 2019). ...
Article
Full-text available
Profits are necessary for the survival of every business in the world. However, it may be difficult if the company is unable to attract new customers or meet their demands, particularly in a competitive market dominated by vehicle businesses that may rely on monthly sales to survive. Therefore, it is vital to determine the elements that influence vehicle transportation purchase intention. To this end, this study utilised a quantitative approach and questionnaires were sent to residents in Malaysia's central region. Successfully gathered 381 questionnaires, which were distributed to the respondents. Analyses were performed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software and Smart Partial Least Square (PLS) software. Demographic analysis was executed by using SPSS and Smart PLS to test the measurement and structural model. Various variables were analysed, including customers' belief, product quality, brand information, and customers' perception, that might influence purchase intention. According to the study's findings, customers' beliefs, brand information, and customers' perception had a substantial positive relationship with purchase intention. Explanation of the current research offers substantial theoretical and practical value and ideas for increasing vehicle company clients and sales.
... Product familiarity has been related to several marketing-related issues, such as message acceptance, product preference, product satisfaction, and product quality (Marks and Olson, 1981;Schnurr et al., 2017;Sirgy, 1981;Torrico et al., 2019). Studies suggest that consumers who are familiar with a product can process information about the product more efficiently than buyers with no prior knowledge of the product (Loureiro et al., 2020;Shehryar and Hunt, 2005;Zhang et al., 2017). ...
Article
Full-text available
The heavy environmental effect of the fashion industry, along with the growing interest of consumers in sustainability issues, is driving this industry towards greater ecological integrity through the development of sustainable clothing. This study investigates which factors influence green consumer behavioral intention in the clothing industry, through a survey of 2.694 Italian consumers. We study the influence of consumer's environmental concern, perceived value of the product, and consumer familiarity with the product (both direct and indirect experiences) on purchase intention and willingness to pay a premium price for sustainable fashion products. Our results show that environmental concern and perceived value positively affect purchase intention and the willingness to pay a premium price regardless the type of eco-materials used for the products, whereas direct and indirect experiences have different effects based on the specific eco-material used. Further, green consumer behavior is strongly dependent on consumers’ socio-demographic characteristics. Based on these results, important implications for scholars, managers, and policymakers are provided that can foster consumers' adoption of sustainable clothing and a transition towards a more sustainable society. For instance, specific directions for marketing strategy and public communication campaigns are provided.
... Therefore, we expect that an extremely inferior item is required to notice a divergence from the norm. This view seems to echo the theory of differential learning that suggests that the relevance of additional information depends upon its degree of novelty (Schnurr et al., 2017). Assimilation-contrast theory (Sherif & Hovland, 1961;Sherif et al., 1965) also shows that if the actual price is close to the adaptation level, individuals tend to assimilate that stimulus value but the values that are far from the reference price are seen as extreme values that create contrast effects. ...
Article
Full-text available
Extant research in presentation of products in a product line shows that price structure of items affects consumers’ decision-making. Extremeness aversion may hinder individuals to choose premium options in a product line. Thus, our paper aims at finding a viable way to promote the most expensive (and highest quality) items in relatively large choice sets. We introduce the abrupt disparity effect which suggests that the choice probability of the premium product increases when consumers are exposed to a series of items that are presented in an ascending price (and quality) order that is capped with an extremely inferior option positioned right next to the premium. In five experiments, we explore the abrupt disparity effect that has not been hitherto examined in the marketing literature. We hope to illustrate this new ordering effect, its boundary conditions, and provide novel insights to marketers.
... The process of quantifying the perceptual attributes is difficult, and the only method is "behavioral sciences" that describes how many perceptual attributes are desirable. Existing research highlighted the fact that designers and users perceive perceptual attributes differently (Schnurr et al., 2017). Consumers use subjective attributes for narrowing down their choices when they are presented with many similar alternatives. ...
Article
Full-text available
The purpose of this research is to highlight the relationship between green product attributes and consumer trust that influence consumers’ decision to purchase green products in the context of Pakistan. This study contributes to determining quantitatively how green product attributes such as physical, perceptual, and reflexive attributes influence consumers’ trust to purchase a green product and investigates the mediating role of green marketing. Data was collected from different industrial sectors through a survey questionnaire. We employed Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) using the SMART-PLS software to check the reliability and validity of the constructs, and to test the hypotheses. This study reveals variations in terms of shaping the sustainable consumers’ buying behavior by modifying product attributes and green marketing strategies that are in congruence with the proposed hypotheses of this study. In the end, the findings and interpretations of the results are given which can guide the managers to develop effective green marketing campaigns in reshaping the purchase intentions of consumers toward their green products.
... Wireless Communications and Mobile Computing Aesthetics is increasingly important in new product development, market strategy, product quality, product differentiation, and competitive advantage. Literature [28] believes that product appearance and aesthetic factors are more and more important, and aesthetic factors should be integrated into the whole process of product design as an important factor. Reference [29] argues that all high-tech products, regardless of technology, require a surface full of emotions and symbolic meanings. ...
Article
Full-text available
The domestic cultural and creative industry has abundant resource advantages and broad development space. The design for cultural and creative products has evolved rapidly with the objective to improve its quality. The cultural and creative industries have seen rapid growth in the recent years wherein digital technologies have been incorporated with the traditional methodologies. The digital cultural and creative aspect acts are extremely important in the dissemination of traditional culture on the network platform. This is also supported by the state vigorously to implement innovative industrial policies. However, the adoption of digital technology in the cultural and creative industry is a novel approach. But there exists lack of understanding in terms of its nature and development protocols. It is thus necessary to study relevant theories to guide the development of digital cultural and creative industry. The increasingly prosperous aesthetic culture, especially development for cultural and creative industries, has comprehensively improved aesthetic value of the cultural and creative products. Therefore, the methods to evaluate and realize the aesthetic value of digital, cultural, and creative products are extremely important and relevant in the present day and age. In this study, neural network is used to design an improved back propagation (BP) network in order to evaluate the aesthetic value of digital cultural and creative products. At the outset, the basic idea, structural characteristics, the learning algorithm, and its flow of functioning in the BP network are analyzed. Then, an aesthetic value evaluation model of digital cultural and creative products with BP network is developed. Next, considering the shortcomings of BP network, a segmentation adaptive strategy is used to improve the view field and step size for artificial fish swarm algorithm (AFSA). Finally, the improvised algorithm is verified wherein the simulation results reveal improvement in algorithm convergence speed as well as improvement in optimal solution accuracy as part of the adaptive improvement approach.
... low) product familiarity did not tend to believe that scarce products are more valuable as they were less likely to rely on heuristic cues when making judgements. Similarly, Schnurr et al. (2017) found that when consumers are familiar (vs. unfamiliar) with a product, their evaluation of the product attractiveness would not be influenced by the attractiveness of the context in which the product is presented. ...
Article
Full-text available
This study demonstrates a visual phenomenon in online product presentation: product size perception is influenced by the depth of field of the presentation image. Depth of field refers to how blurry or sharp the background around the focused subject is a shallow depth‐of‐field image result in a clear focused subject and a blurry background, while in a deep depth‐of‐field image, both the subject and the background are clear. One eye‐tracking study, three behavioral experiments, and one field study show that a shallow (vs. deep) depth‐of‐field product presentation (i.e., a clear product with a blurry background) increases consumers' product size perceptions. This effect is mediated by the greater attention allocated to the product and is moderated by product familiarity. Specifically, when product familiarity is low, consumer attention mediates the significant effect of depth of field on product size perception. However, when product familiarity is high, the effects of depth of field and consumer attention decrease. The current research contributes to the previous research on product presentation and product size perception by investigating the effect of a novel factor, the depth of field, on consumers' estimations of product size. Overall, the findings encourage online retailers to carefully adapt the depth of field technique in their product presentation according to their objectives (e.g., attract consumers' interest vs. provide accurate information) and consumers' familiarity with their products.
... e a intenção de compra(SCHNURR et al., 2017) de várias combinações de cores do mesmo livro. Na segunda parte, relacionada com a tipografia, foi medida também a atratividade, em conjunto com um grupo de nove emoções(ZENTNER et al., 2008): agressividade, alegria, angústia, afetividade, culpa, felicidade, medo, ternura e tristeza. ...
Article
Full-text available
Resumo: A literatura sobre a influência da cor e da tipografia tem revelado alguma contradição e nem sempre é objeto de reflexão na área editorial. Esta pesquisa tem como principal objetivo contribuir para a perceção relativa à cor e tipografia em capa de livro. Foram analisadas as emoções (positivas e negativas), atratividade e intenção de compra, em relação a capas de livros digitalmente manipuladas. De acordo com os participantes (n=166), cores quentes e cores complementares induziram a maior atratividade e intenção de compra. Quanto à tipografia, os resultados foram menos conclusivos, embora as fontes preferidas tenham sido as serifadas, ornamentais e não helvéticas. Finalmente, discutiram-se implicações práticas para designers gráficos e marketers. Palavras-chave: Design; Cor; Tipografia; Intenção de compra; Atratividade. Abstract: Literature on the influence of color and typography has revealed some contradiction and its conclusions are seldom applied in the editorial area. The main goal of this research is to contribute to the perception of color and typography on book covers. Emotions (positive and negative), attractiveness and purchase intention for digitally manipulated book covers were analyzed. Participants (n=166) revealed both warm colors and complementary colors induce higher attractiveness and purchase intention. As for typography, results were less conclusive, although the preferred font types were serif, ornamental and non-helvetic ones. Finally, practical implications for graphic designers and marketers were discussed.
Article
Purpose This paper aims to understand what kind of fashion product picture can arouse greater embodied mental simulation at two distinct steps of consumers' shopping journey (choice between options and purchase intention). Design/methodology/approach Two experimental studies were developed. Study 1 ( n = 169) investigated consumers' purchase intention, and Study 2 ( n = 156) investigated consumers' choice for a T-shirt displayed in an e-commerce store. The authors manipulated the product picture by considering pictures with the presence or absence of a human model wearing the product (flat vs. mannequin vs. human model without a face vs. human model with a face). Findings Consumers demonstrated greater choice and purchase intention for the picture that aroused greater embodied mental simulation. Different pictures aroused greater embodied mental simulation depending on the consumer journey step (choice between two options or purchase intention). Perceived product attractiveness influenced this finding. Research limitations/implications The data on men and women were analyzed together due to the low number of male participants in both studies. Practical implications The results suggest that mannequin pictures should be used in situations involving product evaluation (e-commerce categories' pages) and that pictures with human models should be used in situations entailing further analysis of the product (e-commerce product page) to encourage purchase decisions. E-commerce managers also need to use pictures of human models when the product is viewed as less attractive. Originality/value This research investigated embodied mental simulation around product pictures at two distinct steps of consumers' shopping journey.
Article
Full-text available
Consumer Electronic Products are deemed essential in the new normal. Even with the increasing popularity of online marketplaces in the country, Filipinos are meticulous or careless in choosing a product. This pandemic has changed consumer behavior factors over the long term for further research - that is why this study aims to describe and identify the most influential purchasing behaviors of electronic products on Shopee and Lazada. Further understanding how the generations differ from each other’s purchasing behavior; Knowing also the preferred online marketplace by Filipinos. The researchers conducted a quantitative descriptive-comparative study to achieve the objectives and gather data through an online survey. From the results, Filipino consumers’ most influential purchasing behavior is the Product-Related Details. Filipinos wanted to physically assess the electronic product but with the restrictions of buying the product online. It is hard to base on all the product information, reviews, and feedback from other buyers.
Chapter
Full-text available
Presents an integrative model of the emergence, direction (assimilation vs. contrast), and size of context effects in social judgment.
Article
Full-text available
Despite its centrality to human thoughts and practices, aesthetics has largely been ignored in research on Web site design. Recently, studies have begun to show that aesthetic qualities such as color, graphics, and the layout of a Web site can play an important role in improving consumer shopping experiences. By integrating theories and research findings from diverse fields, we investigate the impacts of two dimensions of aesthetics, namely, classical aesthetics and expressive aesthetics, on online consumers' shopping value. More important, we propose that the effect of these two dimensions of aesthetics on consumer shopping value is contingent on the hedonic and utilitarian nature of products that consumers purchase online. A laboratory experiment was conducted to test the research model, and the results generally support our hypotheses. From a theoretical perspective, our findings not only establish consumer shopping value as a key business value of Web site aesthetics but also enrich the current knowledge on the contingent effect of Web site aesthetics for utilitarian and hedonic products. From a practical perspective, the findings provide guidance for online vendors to provide their customers with better service in the form of properly designed aesthetic Web sites.
Article
Full-text available
The authors report a study of the effects of price, brand, and store information on buyers' perceptions of product quality and value, as well as their willingness to buy. Hypotheses are derived from a conceptual model positing the effects of extrinsic cues (price, brand name, and store name) on buyers' perceptions and purchase intentions. Moreover, the design of the experiment allows additional analyses on the relative differential effects of price, brand name, and store name on the three dependent variables. Results indicate that price had a positive effect on perceived quality, but a negative effect on perceived value and willingness to buy. Favorable brand and store information positively influenced perceptions of quality and value, and subjects' willingness to buy. The major findings are discussed and directions for future research are suggested.
Article
Full-text available
Prior research on product design has focused predominantly on the importance of product aesthetics in generating favorable consumer response. Interestingly, little attention has been given to the importance of aesthetics relative to product function (a fundamental component of product design) or to brand strength–two factors that are also considered to have a significant influence on consumers’ product evaluations and on product success. This study investigates how product design (conceptualized as product aesthetics and function) interacts with brand strength to influence consumers’ product liking and quality evaluations. Results suggest that design and brand strength differentially impact liking and quality judgments. In addition, judgments of liking and quality are found to be different in the way they are formed. Specifically, product liking appears to be readily formed through a process that integrates design information only; brand strength exhibits no significant influence. Quality judgments appear to take longer to process, and involve the integration of design and brand information.
Article
The authors report a study of the effects of price, brand, and store information on buyers’ perceptions of product quality and value, as well as their willingness to buy. Hypotheses are derived from a conceptual model positing the effects of extrinsic cues (price, brand name, and store name) on buyers’ perceptions and purchase intentions. Moreover, the design of the experiment allows additional analyses on the relative differential effects of price, brand name, and store name on the three dependent variables. Results indicate that price had a positive effect on perceived quality, but a negative effect on perceived value and willingness to buy. Favorable brand and store information positively influenced perceptions of quality and value, and subjects’ willingness to buy. The major findings are discussed and directions for future research are suggested.
Article
Prior research on product design has focused predominantly on the importance of product aesthetics in generating favorable consumer response. Interestingly, little attention has been given to the importance of aesthetics relative to product function (a fundamental component of product design) or to brand strength-two factors that are also considered to have a significant influence on consumers' product evaluations and on product success. This study investigates how product design (conceptualized as product aesthetics and function) interacts with brand strength to influence consumers' product liking and quality evaluations. Results suggest that design and brand strength differentially impact liking and quality judgments. In addition, judgments of liking and quality are found to be different in the way they are formed. Specifically, product liking appears to be readily formed through a process that integrates design information only; brand strength exhibits no significant influence. Quality judgments appear to take longer to process, and involve the integration of design and brand information.
Article
The physical form or design of a product is an unquestioned determinant of its marketplace success. A good design attracts consumers to a product, communicates to them, and adds value to the product by increasing the quality of the usage experiences associated with it. Nevertheless, the topic of product design is rarely, if ever, encountered in marketing journals. To bring needed attention to the subject of product design and enable researchers to better investigate design issues, the author introduces a conceptual model and several propositions that describe how the form of a product relates to consumers’ psychological and behavioral responses. After presenting this model, the author describes numerous strategic implications and research directions.
Article
This research investigates the role that food color plays in conferring identity, meaning and liking to those foods and beverages that assume many flavor varieties. In a taste test experiment manipulating food color and label information, 389 undergraduates at a public university (53% male and 47% female; 79% between 18 and 21 years of age) were assigned the task of evaluating a successful brand of powdered fruit drink. Results from this study indicate that food color affects the consumer’s ability to correctly identify flavor, to form distinct flavor profiles and preferences, and dominates other flavor information sources, including labeling and taste. Strategic alternatives for the effective deployment of food color for promotional purposes at the point of purchase are recommended.
Article
Associations to a contextual cue were contrasted with those of an advertised object when the cognitive resources devoted to message processing were substantial and when the categories to which the contextual cue and the advertised object belonged displayed low overlap. The absence of either of these factors prompted assimilation. A two-factor theory is offered to explain these outcomes.
Article
This article reports the results of an experimental investigation of the influence of a communicator’s characteristics on respondent’s evaluation of an advertisement when the communicator is in the role of a spokesperson. Specifically, the author assesses the impact of the physical attractiveness, sex and race of a spokesperson, the sex of the respondent and product advertised on respondent’s attitude toward the advertisement, and respondent’s perceptions of the advertised product. The results presented indicate that the effectiveness of the factors mentioned are dependent on the specific objective of the communication. A main effect of physical attractiveness was noted on a subject’s attitude toward the advertisement, on perceptions of product quality and intent to purchase. The sex of the communicator impacted on a subject's perception of product quality and interacted with the race of the communicator to effect the intent to purchase variable. Race was shown to effect the subject’s perception of product quality. A main effect of the sex of the subject was noted for the cognition variable.