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Multiproduct search

  • Zhou, Jidong

This paper presents a sequential search model where consumers look for several products among competitive multiproduct �rms. In a multiproduct search mar- ket, both consumer behavior and �rm behavior exhibit di¤erent features from the single-product case: a consumer often returns to previously visited �rms before running out of options; and prices can decrease with search costs and increase with the number of �rms. The framework is then extended in two directions. First, by introducing both single-product and multiproduct searchers, the model can explain the phenomenon of countercyclical pricing, i.e., prices of many retail products decline during peak-demand periods. Second, by allowing �rms to use bundling strategies, the model sheds new light on how bundling a¤ects market performance. In a search environment, bundling tends to reduce consumer search intensity, which can soften competition and reverse the usual welfare assessment of competitive bundling in a perfect information setting.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 37139.

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Date of creation: 31 Nov 2011
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:37139
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  1. Barry Nalebuff, 2000. "Competing Against Bundles," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm157, Yale School of Management.
  2. Matutes, Carmen & Regibeau, Pierre, 1992. "Compatibility and Bundling of Complementary Goods in a Duopoly," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 37-54, March.
  3. Bulent Guler & Fatih Guvenen & Giovanni L. Violante, 2009. "Joint-Search Theory: New Opportunities and New Frictions," NBER Working Papers 15011, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Mark Armstrong & Jidong Zhou, 2010. "Exploding Offers and Buy-Now Discounts," EERI Research Paper Series EERI_RP_2010_44, Economics and Econometrics Research Institute (EERI), Brussels.
  5. McAfee R. Preston, 1995. "Multiproduct Equilibrium Price Dispersion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 83-105, October.
  6. Simon P. Anderson & Regis Renault, 1999. "Pricing, Product Diversity, and Search Costs: A Bertrand-Chamberlin-Diamond Model," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(4), pages 719-735, Winter.
  7. Weitzman, Martin L, 1979. "Optimal Search for the Best Alternative," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(3), pages 641-54, May.
  8. MacDonald, James M, 2000. "Demand, Information, and Competition: Why Do Food Prices Fall at Seasonal Demand Peaks?," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1), pages 27-45, March.
  9. Haan, Marco A. & Moraga-Gonzalez, Jose L., 2009. "Advertising for attention in a consumer search model," IESE Research Papers D/794, IESE Business School.
  10. Elizabeth J. Warner & Robert B. Barsky, 1995. "The Timing and Magnitude of Retail Store Markdowns: Evidence from Weekends and Holidays," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(2), pages 321-352.
  11. Rhodes, Andrew, 2011. "Multiproduct pricing and the Diamond Paradox," MPRA Paper 32511, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Barry Nalebuff, 2004. "Bundling as an Entry Barrier," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(1), pages 159-187.
  13. Rotemberg, Julio J & Saloner, Garth, 1986. "A Supergame-Theoretic Model of Price Wars during Booms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(3), pages 390-407, June.
  14. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan & Michael D. Whinston, 1989. "Multiproduct Monopoly, Commodity Bundling, and Correlation of Values," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(2), pages 371-383.
  15. Burdett, Kenneth & Malueg, David A., 1981. "The theory of search for several goods," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 362-376, June.
  16. John Thanassoulis, 2007. "Competitive Mixed Bundling and Consumer Surplus," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(2), pages 437-467, 06.
  17. Carlson, John A. & McAfee, R. Preston, 1984. "Joint search for several goods," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 337-345, April.
  18. Chen, Yongmin, 1997. "Equilibrium Product Bundling," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70(1), pages 85-103, January.
  19. Carmen Matutes & Pierre Regibeau, 1988. ""Mix and Match": Product Compatibility without Network Externalities," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(2), pages 221-234, Summer.
  20. Eugenio J. Miravete, 2002. "Preserving Log-Concavity Under Convolution: Comment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(3), pages 1253-1254, May.
  21. Shelegia, Sandro, 2012. "Multiproduct pricing in oligopoly," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 231-242.
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