Design of Consumer Review Systems and Product Pricing
Consumer review systems have become an important marketing communication tool through which consumers share and learn product information. Although there is abundant evidence that consumer reviews have significant impact on consumer purchasing decisions, the design of consumer review systems and its impact on review outcomes and product sales have not yet been well examined. This paper analyzes firms’ review system design and product pricing strategies. We formally model two design features of consumer review systems – rating scale and disclosure of specific product attribute information. We show that firms’ optimal strategies critically depend on contextual characteristics such as product quality, product popularity, and consumer misfit cost. Our results suggest that firms should choose a low rating scale for niche products and a high rating scale for popular products. Firms should disclose specific product attribute information to attract the desired consumer segment when product quality is low relative to misfit cost, and the resulting optimal size of the targeted consumer market increases in product popularity and product quality. Different pricing strategies should be deployed during the initial sale period for different product types. For niche products, firms are advised to adopt lower-bound pricing for high-quality products to take advantage of the positive word of mouth. For popular products, firms are advised to adopt upper-bound pricing for high-quality products to enjoy the direct profit from the initial sale period, even after taking into account the negative impact of high price on consumer reviews.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- David Godes & Dina Mayzlin, 2004. "Using Online Conversations to Study Word-of-Mouth Communication," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 23(4), pages 545-560, June.
- Nikolay Archak & Anindya Ghose & Panagiotis G. Ipeirotis, 2011. "Deriving the Pricing Power of Product Features by Mining Consumer Reviews," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(8), pages 1485-1509, August.
- Bakos, Yannis & Dellarocas, Chrysanthos, 2003. "Cooperation Without Enforcement? A comparative analysis of litigation and online reputation as quality assurance mechanisms," Working papers 4295-03, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
- Dina Mayzlin, 2006. "Promotional Chat on the Internet," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(2), pages 155-163, 03-04.
- Yubo Chen & Jinhong Xie, 2008. "Online Consumer Review: Word-of-Mouth as a New Element of Marketing Communication Mix," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 54(3), pages 477-491, March.
- Dmitri Kuksov & Ying Xie, 2010. "Pricing, Frills, and Customer Ratings," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(5), pages 925-943, 09-10.
- Monic Sun, 2012. "How Does the Variance of Product Ratings Matter?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 58(4), pages 696-707, April.
- Chrysanthos Dellarocas, 2006. "Strategic Manipulation of Internet Opinion Forums: Implications for Consumers and Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(10), pages 1577-1593, October.
- Hansen, Flemming, 1976. " Psychological Theories of Consumer Choice," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(3), pages 117-42, December.
- Chrysanthos Dellarocas, 2003. "The Digitization of Word of Mouth: Promise and Challenges of Online Feedback Mechanisms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(10), pages 1407-1424, October.
- Nikolay Archak & Anindya Ghose & Panagiotis G. Ipeirotis, 2007. "Deriving the Pricing Power of Product Features by Mining Consumer Reviews," Working Papers 07-36, NET Institute.
- Dellarocas, Chrysanthos, 2003. "The Digitization of Word-of-mouth: Promise and Challenges of Online Feedback Mechanisms," Working papers 4296-03, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:net:wpaper:1210. 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: (Nicholas Economides)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.