In Or Out of Focus? Subcategories Trigger In-Group Heterogenity and Out-Group Homogenity Effects in Product Assortments

Erica van Herpen, University of Wagening,The Netherlands
Anick Bosmans, Tilburg University, The Netherlands
We investigate how the presence of a subcategory influences consumers’ variety perceptions of products in and outside that subcategory. Two experiments show that subcategories trigger in-group heterogeneity and out-group homogeneity: consumers focus on the subcategory of interest, such that perceived variety increases for this but decreases for the alternative subcategory.
[ to cite ]:
Erica van Herpen and Anick Bosmans (2012) ,"In Or Out of Focus? Subcategories Trigger In-Group Heterogenity and Out-Group Homogenity Effects in Product Assortments", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 40, eds. Zeynep Gürhan-Canli, Cele Otnes, and Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 661-662.