IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/kud/kuieci/2005-09.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Two at the Top: Quality Differentiation in Markets with Switching Costs

Author

Listed:
  • Thomas Gehrig

    (Universität Freiburg)

  • Rune Stenbacka

    (Swedish School of Economics, Helsinki)

Abstract

We explore the effects of switching costs on the subgame perfect quality decisions of oligopolists with repeated price competition. We establish a strong strategic quality premium. We show that competition for the establishment of customer relationships will eliminate low-quality firms in period 1 and that low-quality firms can survive only based on poaching profits. The equilibrium configuration is characterized by an agglomeration of two providers of top-quality as soon as switching cost heterogeneity is sufficiently significant. We demonstrate a finiteness property, according to which the two top-quality firms dominate the market with a joint market share exceeding 50 %.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Gehrig & Rune Stenbacka, 2005. "Two at the Top: Quality Differentiation in Markets with Switching Costs," CIE Discussion Papers 2005-09, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. Centre for Industrial Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kud:kuieci:2005-09
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.econ.ku.dk/cie/dp/dp_2003-2006/2005-09.pdf/
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Yongmin Chen, 1997. "Paying Customers to Switch," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(4), pages 877-897, December.
    2. Paul Klemperer, 1995. "Competition when Consumers have Switching Costs: An Overview with Applications to Industrial Organization, Macroeconomics, and International Trade," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(4), pages 515-539.
    3. Dos Santos Ferreira, Rodolphe & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1996. "Horizontal and vertical differentiation: The Launhardt model," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 485-506, June.
    4. Drew Fudenberg & Jean Tirole, 2000. "Customer Poaching and Brand Switching," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(4), pages 634-657, Winter.
    5. Gehrig, Thomas, 1996. "Natural oligopoly and customer networks in intermediated markets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 101-118.
    6. Irmen, Andreas & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1998. "Competition in Multi-characteristics Spaces: Hotelling Was Almost Right," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 76-102, January.
    7. Avner Shaked & John Sutton, 1982. "Relaxing Price Competition Through Product Differentiation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 49(1), pages 3-13.
    8. Gehrig, Thomas, 1998. "Competing markets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 277-310, February.
    9. repec:ulb:ulbeco:2013/1759 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. de Palma, A, et al, 1985. "The Principle of Minimum Differentiation Holds under Sufficient Heterogeneity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(4), pages 767-781, July.
    11. Farrell, Joseph & Klemperer, Paul, 2007. "Coordination and Lock-In: Competition with Switching Costs and Network Effects," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: Mark Armstrong & Robert Porter (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 31, pages 1967-2072, Elsevier.
    12. ANDERSON, Simon P. & de PALMA, André & THISSE, Jacques-François, 1992. "Interpretations of the logit discrete choice models and the theory of product differentiation," LIDAM Reprints CORE 1017, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    13. Thomas Gehrig & Rune Stenbacka, 2004. "Differentiation‐Induced Switching Costs and Poaching," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(4), pages 635-655, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Stole, Lars A., 2007. "Price Discrimination and Competition," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: Mark Armstrong & Robert Porter (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 34, pages 2221-2299, Elsevier.
    2. Bernhardt, Dan & Liu, Qihong & Serfes, Konstantinos, 2007. "Product customization," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(6), pages 1396-1422, August.
    3. Özlem Bedre-Defolie & Gary Biglaiser, 2015. "Contracts as a barrier to entry in markets with non-pivotal buyers," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-15-02, ESMT European School of Management and Technology, revised 12 Dec 2016.
    4. Christian Dahl Winther, 2007. "Optimal research effort and product differentiation in network industries," Economics Working Papers 2007-19, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    5. Bernard Caillaud & Romain de Nijs, 2011. "Strategic loyalty reward in dynamic price Discrimination," Working Papers halshs-00622291, HAL.
    6. Irina Baye & Geza Sapi, 2020. "Consumer foresight, customer data, and investment in targeting technology," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 67(4), pages 363-386, September.
    7. Christiaan Hogendorn, 2007. "Broadband Internet: net neutrality versus open access," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 185-208, August.
    8. Miettinen, Topi & Stenbacka, Rune, 2018. "Strategic short-termism: Implications for the management and acquisition of customer relationships," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 153(C), pages 200-222.
    9. Bernard Caillaud & Romain de Nijs, 2011. "Strategic loyalty reward in dynamic price Discrimination," PSE Working Papers halshs-00622291, HAL.
    10. Miettinen, Topi & Stenbacka, Rune, 2015. "Personalized pricing versus history-based pricing: implications for privacy policy," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 56-68.
    11. Jiwoong Shin & K. Sudhir, 2010. "A Customer Management Dilemma: When Is It Profitable to Reward One's Own Customers?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(4), pages 671-689, 07-08.
    12. Rosa Branca Esteves, 2009. "A Survey on the Economics of Behaviour-Based Price Discrimination," NIPE Working Papers 5/2009, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
    13. Jeong, Yuncheol & Maruyama, Masayoshi, 2018. "Positioning and pricing strategies in a market with switching costs and staying costs," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 47-57.
    14. Shy, Oz & Stenbacka, Rune, 2013. "Investment in customer recognition and information exchange," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 92-106.
    15. Szech, Nora & Weinschenk, Philipp, 2013. "Rebates in a Bertrand game," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 124-133.
    16. Gehrig, Thomas & Stenbacka, Rune, 2007. "Information sharing and lending market competition with switching costs and poaching," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 77-99, January.
    17. Barone, Guglielmo & Felici, Roberto & Pagnini, Marcello, 2011. "Switching costs in local credit markets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 694-704.
    18. Mengze Shi, 2013. "A theoretical analysis of endogenous and exogenous switching costs," Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 205-230, June.
    19. Amante, Ana & Vareda, João, 2010. "Improving consumer mobility in the mobile voice services market: a comprehensive set of remedies," 21st European Regional ITS Conference, Copenhagen 2010: Telecommunications at new crossroads - Changing value configurations, user roles, and regulation 2, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    20. Boccard, N. & Wauthy, X.Y., 2010. "Equilibrium vertical differentiation in a Bertrand model with capacity precommitment," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 288-297, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    quality choice; switching costs; poaching; natural oligopoly;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:kud:kuieci:2005-09. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/ciekudk.html .

    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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Thomas Hoffmann (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/ciekudk.html .

    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.