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The double benefits of consumer certainty: combining risk and range effects


  • Erik Maier


  • Robert Wilken


  • Florian Dost



We investigate consumer certainty as an important dimension of attitude strength and explore its influence on willingness to pay (WTP) ranges. WTP ranges are defined by two thresholds (floor/minimum and ceiling/maximum reservation price); their difference indicates the degree of (un)certainty. Across five studies (online, laboratory, and field experiments plus a field survey) with more than 25,000 participants, we find that increased consumer certainty generates an asymmetric shift in the WTP thresholds, such that the floor price increases more strongly than the ceiling price, which also implies a reduction in the WTP range. Consequently, this research specifies predictions offered by choice models that use Bayesian learning. The asymmetric effects appear, irrespective of the source of uncertainty, so our study advances understanding of whether consumers differ in their behavior as a consequence of preference or product performance uncertainty. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Suggested Citation

  • Erik Maier & Robert Wilken & Florian Dost, 2015. "The double benefits of consumer certainty: combining risk and range effects," Marketing Letters, Springer, vol. 26(4), pages 473-488, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:mktlet:v:26:y:2015:i:4:p:473-488
    DOI: 10.1007/s11002-014-9282-5

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Zawojska, Ewa & Czajkowski, Mikotaj, 2017. "Are preferences stated in web vs. personal interviews different? A comparison of willingness to pay results for a large multi-country study of the Baltic Sea eutrophication reduction," Annual Meeting, 2017, June 18-21, Montreal, Canada 258604, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society.
    2. repec:eee:jbrese:v:76:y:2017:i:c:p:219-236 is not listed on IDEAS


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