How do consumers use signals to assess quality?
This article analyzes the way some 6,000 European wine consumers, both connoisseurs and non-connoisseurs, use a set of available signals (price, umbrella branding, goodwill, past consumption) to assess the quality of Bordeaux wines where price is the main source of information on quality. Connoisseurs use this signal less intensively than on connoisseurs. Price represents a substitute for umbrella branding where consumers are not aware of who is beneath this umbrella, and where this signal is thus of no help to them. This could explain why such wines tend nowadays to lose market share in favor of branded wines that are easier to evaluate.
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