Different strokes for different folks: A method to accommodate decision -making heterogeneity
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Consumer decision making is complex and no single perspective offers a complete theory of consumer decision making. While the research community acknowledges that there is heterogeneity, homogenous choice models dominate consumer decision research. This paper provides insights from one method that was designed to accommodate decision -making heterogeneity. Computer process tracing methods can be used to observe different consumer decisions in one product category to understand what and how people choose. More than two-hundred and fifty decisions were observed in this research. Consumers were asked to select one of nine air conditioner alternatives described with six salient attributes. The research findings clearly reveal consumer differences. Specifically, the attributes and decision types used differed resulting in different product choices. This paper reveals how methods that accommodate decision -making heterogeneity can be used by retailers to inform product ranging decisions for categories.
Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services