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The Impact of Excess Product Choice on Customer Engagement and Well Being

   The Graduate School

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  Dr R Marciniak, Dr C Connell  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Project reference number: GCUL-2020-0002

The research will focus on customer engagement, online consumer behaviour, psychology and fashion retail and how excess product choice positively, or otherwise impacts on consumer engagement and well being. The fashion retail sector has changed significantly in recent years, in particular, the emergence of new players via the growth of online fashion empires who, such as ASOS, offers of c.87,000 products, with between 4,000 and 5,000 new styles available each week (Retail Insight, 2018). The assumption being that offering greater product choice will increase sales, that is, the chances that the customer will find a product they really like. However, research identifies a link between too much choice and negative impact on sales (Iyengar and Lepper, 2000; Chernev, Böckenholt and Goodman, 2015; Lemon and Verhoef, 2016). Indeed, Iyengar and Lepper (2000) argue, if faced with too much choice, consumers who do make a purchase, are less satisfied with their decisions, as excess product choice impacts upon a feeling of well-being. Increased product choice and the proliferation of the promotion of fashion products via Instagram and other social media is happening at the same time there is a rise in mental health issues, particularly, in teenagers and young adults. Within this context, there is limited understanding of product choice as a viable marketing strategy. Faced with the potential of customer negative well being and disengagement, how much product choice to offer presents an empirical challenge.

Research questions are:

  • What is the impact on product choice as a marketing strategy on customer engagement?
  • What is the impact of product choice on customer well being?

This interdisciplinary research will draw upon and contribute to knowledge in the subjects of marketing, specifically, customer engagement, marketing strategy.

How to Apply

This project is available as a 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time PhD study programme with an expected start date of 1 October 2021 or 1 February 2022.

Candidates are encouraged to contact the research supervisors for the project before applying. All applicants must include a research proposal in their application.

To apply for this project as a full-time candidate, please click here.

To apply for this project as a part-time candidate, please click here.

For further information on the application process, see: https://www.gcu.ac.uk/research/postgraduateresearchstudy/applicationprocess/.

Please send any other enquires regarding your application to [Email Address Removed].

Funding Notes

Applicants are expected to find external funding sources to cover the tuition fees and living expenses. Alumni and International students new to GCU who are self-funding are eligible for fee discounts. See more on fees and funding. www.gcu.ac.uk/research/postgraduateresearchstudy/.
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