Abstract versus Concrete Product Information: Theoretical and Practical Considerations
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When describing a product to consumers, should marketers use abstract or concrete product descriptions? Prior research suggests that a consumer’s level of product expertise or brand awareness may affect their preference for abstract versus concrete product information. Drawing on the classical means-end chain model and the concept of consumer mindset, we propose that product evaluation mode (i.e., whether product alternatives are presented separately or jointly) will affect consumer preference for abstract versus concrete product-related information.We present an overview of our conceptual model and we outline an empirical study to test our hypotheses. Our findings should have direct relevance for the marketing of products on brand and retailer websites. Based on our findings, marketers should have greater insight on how to describe products based on whether products are individually or jointly presented to online shoppers.