IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Marketing tactics discouraging price search: Deception and competition


  • Lindsey-Mullikin, Joan
  • Petty, Ross D.


Retailers attempt to assure consumers that their deals are bargains using a variety of marketing tactics. Because consumers continue information and price searches until satisfied with the amount of the information to make a purchase, such bargain assurances (BAs) can change consumers' shopping behavior. This article identifies twelve common BAs and reviews extant marketing literature to derive evidence of how BAs affect consumers' purchasing behavior. It then examines how these practices are regulated to prevent consumer deception or a reduction in competition. This article concludes by offering three policy recommendations: BAs influence consumers and require regulation; the regulation of BAs demands a comprehensive rather than a piecemeal approach; and consumer policy should facilitate and encourage accurate price comparisons.

Suggested Citation

  • Lindsey-Mullikin, Joan & Petty, Ross D., 2011. "Marketing tactics discouraging price search: Deception and competition," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 67-73, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:64:y:2011:i:1:p:67-73

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Byung-Do Kim & Mengze Shi & Kannan Srinivasan, 2001. "Reward Programs and Tacit Collusion," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(2), pages 99-120, June.
    2. Eric T. Anderson & Duncan I. Simester, 2001. "Are Sale Signs Less Effective When More Products Have Them?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(2), pages 121-142, March.
    3. Yadav, Manjit S, 1994. " How Buyers Evaluate Product Bundles: A Model of Anchoring and Adjustment," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(2), pages 342-353, September.
    4. Inman, J Jeffrey & Peter, Anil C & Raghubir, Priya, 1997. " Framing the Deal: The Role of Restrictions in Accentuating Deal Value," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(1), pages 68-79, June.
    5. Lichtenstein, Donald R & Burton, Scot & Karson, Eric J, 1991. " The Effect of Semantic Cues on Consumer Perceptions of Reference Price Ads," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 18(3), pages 380-391, December.
    6. Srivastava, Joydeep & Lurie, Nicholas, 2001. " A Consumer Perspective on Price-Matching Refund Policies: Effect on Price Perceptions and Search Behavior," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 28(2), pages 296-307, September.
    7. Mobley, Mary F & Bearden, William O & Teel, Jesse E, 1988. " An Investigation of Individual Responses to Tensile Price Claims," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(2), pages 273-279, September.
    8. Johnson, Eric J. & Payne, John W. & Bettman, James R., 1988. "Information displays and preference reversals," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-21, August.
    9. Sanjay K. Dhar & Claudia González-Vallejo & Dilip Soman, 1999. "Modeling the Effects of Advertised Price Claims: Tensile Versus Precise Claims?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 18(2), pages 154-177.
    10. Eric T. Anderson & Duncan I. Simester, 1998. "The Role of Sale Signs," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 17(2), pages 139-155.
    11. David R. Bell & James M. Lattin, 1998. "Shopping Behavior and Consumer Preference for Store Price Format: Why “Large Basket” Shoppers Prefer EDLP," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 17(1), pages 66-88.
    12. Urbany, Joel E & Bearden, William O & Weilbaker, Dan C, 1988. " The Effect of Plausible and Exaggerated Reference Prices on Consumer Perceptions and Price Search," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 95-110, June.
    13. Inman, J Jeffrey & McAlister, Leigh & Hoyer, Wayne D, 1990. " Promotion Signal: Proxy for a Price Cut?," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(1), pages 74-81, June.
    14. Rajiv Lal & Ram Rao, 1997. "Supermarket Competition: The Case of Every Day Low Pricing," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 16(1), pages 60-80.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Gazley, Aaron & Sinha, Ashish & Rod, Michel, 2016. "Toward a theory of marketing law transgressions," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 476-483.
    2. Kaltcheva, Velitchka D. & Winsor, Robert D. & Patino, Anthony & Shapiro, Stewart, 2013. "Impact of promotions on shopper price comparisons," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(7), pages 809-815.
    3. Jeanne Lallement & Monique Zollinger, 2013. "« Vite et à tout prix ? » ou l'importance du prix pour le consommateur pressé," Post-Print hal-01675117, HAL.
    4. Rydval, J. & Bartoška, J. & Brožová, H., 2014. "Semantic Network in Information Processing for the Pork Market," AGRIS on-line Papers in Economics and Informatics, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Faculty of Economics and Management, vol. 6(3), September.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:64:y:2011:i:1:p:67-73. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.