Attribute Conflict in Consumer Decision Making: The Role of Task Compatibility
Past research holds that a decision between two unattractive alternatives is more difficult than one between two attractive alternatives. We argue that this conclusion may rest on the the task of "choosing" adopted in the past research. A task of choosing requires an attractiveness judgment that is compatible with attractive alternatives but incompatible with unattractive alternatives. We test this thesis by reversing the compatibility using a reject task that requires judgment of unattractiveness. Two studies find that compatibility between alternative valence and task influences decision time, decision difficulty, attribute recall, and effort, underscoring the role of the task in the study of attribute conflict. (c) 2008 by JOURNAL OF CONSUMER RESEARCH, Inc..
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