How do Customers Alter Their Basket Composition When They Perceive the Retail Store to Be Crowded? An Empirical Study

A. Aydinli, Lien Lamey, Kobe Millet, Anne ter Braak, Maya Vuegen

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Using data from a large-scale field study, we show that (perceptions of) crowding change(s) the composition of a consumer's shopping basket. Specifically, as shoppers experience more crowding, their shopping basket contains (a) relatively more affect-rich (“hedonic”) products, and (b) relatively more national brands. We offer a plausible dual-process explanation for this phenomenon: Crowding induced distraction limits cognitive capacity, increasing the relative impact of affective responses in purchase decisions. As we are the first to show that level of crowding relates to what shoppers buy (at both product and brand level), the implications of these effects for retailers are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-216
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Retailing
Volume97
Issue number2
Early online date8 Jun 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

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