Two Essays on Consumers' Point-of-Purchase Decision Making

Date

2019-08

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Abstract

Marketing research shows that most purchase decisions are made at the point-of purchase. Moreover, studies show that human visual system is central in natural tasks such as searching and decision making (Pieters and Wedel, 2008b; Burke and Leykin, 2014). Taken together, these findings suggest that visual behaviors have an important impact on consumers’ product considerations and purchase decisions. To date, rigorous academic investigation on the relationship between consumers’ visual behaviors and point-of-purchase considerations are sparse. Through two essays, this dissertation investigates the extent to which consumers’ visual behavioral tendencies (lateral and vertical biases) and visual attention on prices drive their POP considerations using in-store ambulatory eye-tracking data. In Essay 1, we focus on consumers’ lateral and vertical biases and address two research questions: First, do shoppers have a higher propensity to consider products on their left or right side as they traverse an aisle? (i.e., is the right side the “right” side?) Second, do shoppers tend to consider products at their eye level? (i.e., is eye-level the “buy-level”?) We find that shoppers are more likely to consider products on their right side when traversing an aisle. Further, product level that has the highest propensity for consideration is about 14.7 inches below eye-level. In Essay 2, we focus on product price variations and study the extent to which within-category and inter-temporal price variations affect consumers’ visual attention on price and their product considerations at the point of purchase. We find that across categories, consumers pay attention to prices for only 59% of all the products that were being considered. Moreover, consumers are more likely to pay attention to the price of products associated with higher intertemporal price variation than products with higher within-category price variations.

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Keywords

Shopper marketing, In-store shopping, Shopper research, Eye tracking, Shopper tracking, Retail

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