Perspectives on Consumer Decision Order and Their Impact on Purchase Behavior

Leilei Gao, Stanford University
Itamar Simonson, Stanford University
We contrast two perspectives on consumer decision process or order: (a) first deciding whether to choose and then making a selection from a choice set, (b) first making a selection and then deciding whether to make any purchase. We show that the two orders systematically affect the likelihood of making a purchase across a wide range of problems. Generally, when a selection decision is made first, purchase likelihood is mainly affected by the difficulty of comparing alternatives in a set; when a buy/no-buy decision is made first, purchase likelihood is mainly affected by the overall features of the choice set.
[ to cite ]:
Leilei Gao and Itamar Simonson (2008) ,"Perspectives on Consumer Decision Order and Their Impact on Purchase Behavior", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 166-168.