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An Objective Measure of Search versus Experience Goods


Author Info

  • Laband, David N


This paper proposes the use of product price as an empirically pliable measure of the expected benefits to consumers of acquiring information about product and vendor performance prior to purchase. As the purchase price of an item increases, so does the cost of making a disappointing purchase and, accordingly, the expected benefit from acquiring prepurchase information, ceteris paribus. A continuous price variable (a proxy for the cost of making a disappointing purchase) generates results similar to those obtained by P. Nelson for search versus experience goods, but can be applied to a broader range of goods and services. Copyright 1991 by Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

Volume (Year): 29 (1991)
Issue (Month): 3 (July)
Pages: 497-509

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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:29:y:1991:i:3:p:497-509

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Cited by:
  1. Sinha, Piyush Kumar & Uniyal, Dwarika Prasad, . "Impact of Store format on Shopping Involvement," IIMA Working Papers WP2014-03-06, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Research and Publication Department.
  2. Uniyal, Dwarika Prasad & Sinha, Piyush Kumar, . "Point of Purchase Communication: Role of Information Search, Store Benefit and Shopping Involvement," IIMA Working Papers WP2009-11-07, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Research and Publication Department.
  3. David Paton, 1998. "Who A dvertises Prices? A Firm Level Study Based on Survey Data," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 57-75.


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