An examination of the within -product category versus across -product category effects of partially comparative pricing

Shazad Mustapha Mohammed, Florida International University

Abstract

Partially comparative pricing involves a featured store providing price comparisons in reference to a competitor for some products (comparatively priced products) while omitting such comparisons and providing only its price for other products (non-comparatively priced products). Barone, Manning and Miniard (2004) found that while partially comparative pricing enhanced consumers' price perceptions of comparatively priced products at the featured retailer, it had the opposite effect for non-comparatively priced products (i.e., an inferiority effect). To the contrary, it is argued that a price comparison for one brand in a product category may enhance consumers' price perceptions of the remaining, non-comparatively priced brands within the same product category (i.e., a superiority effect). This research seeks to (a) examine the robustness of partially comparative pricing's effect in an across-product category context compared to a within-product category context and (b) extend the understanding of partially comparative pricing's within-product category effect on non-comparatively priced brands by examining potential moderators of this effect: brand diversity, brand typicality, and the relative expensiveness of the brand receiving the price comparison.^ The findings of four studies provide evidence to support the presence of a superiority effect in a within-product category context and suggests that the adverse effect of partially comparative pricing in an across-product category context may not be as robust as previously thought. Although the superiority effect was unaffected by brand diversity (i.e., whether the brands emanated from different manufacturers or from a single manufacturer), it was found to be moderated by the typicality of the brand receiving the price comparison as well as the comparison brand's relative expensiveness. Research participants formed more favorable relative price beliefs about the non-comparatively priced brand when the comparatively priced brand was perceived as a more typical member of the product category. Similarly, participants formed more favorable beliefs about the non-comparatively priced brand when the comparison price was assigned to the most expensive brand in the product category rather than the least expensive brand.^

Subject Area

Business Administration, Marketing

Recommended Citation

Shazad Mustapha Mohammed, "An examination of the within -product category versus across -product category effects of partially comparative pricing" (January 1, 2006). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. Paper AAI3249716.
http://digitalcommons.fiu.edu/dissertations/AAI3249716

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