When Choice Deferral Does (And Does Not) Generalize to Subsequent Decisions: a Metacognitive Analysis

Hyejeung Cho, University of Texas at San Antonio, USA
Norbert Schwarz, University of Michigan, USA
Past research has shown that when a choice feels difficult, consumers are likely to defer choice. We examine when such choice deferral does or does not generalize to related choice tasks. Generalization of deferral across tasks occurs when consumers attribute the initial difficulty to their own lack of expertise, thus rendering it relevant to all tasks in the same domain; generalization across tasks does not occur when consumers attribute the initial difficulty to attributes of the initial choice set.
[ to cite ]:
Hyejeung Cho and Norbert Schwarz (2010) ,"When Choice Deferral Does (And Does Not) Generalize to Subsequent Decisions: a Metacognitive Analysis", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 187-190 .