The placebo painkiller - An experimental quantitative study on how emotions, associations and experiences using a payment method fosters pain of paying.

Detta är en C-uppsats från Handelshögskolan i Stockholm/Institutionen för marknadsföring och strategi

Sammanfattning: Being able to pay for products and services in various settings is one of the key components of a functional economy. By paying, one gives up something (usually money) in exchange for something else (usually products or services). Conceding money inflicts pain no matter the situation, and the concept pain of payment is central to understanding how and why consumers choose to pay, or to not pay, for a product or a service. Following this rationale, a purchase in terms of utility/disutility should be perceived identically, no matter the method used to pay. However, this is not the case. Previous research shows that the design and characteristics of a payment method result in different customer behaviours. This thesis examines this irrational behaviour concerning paying by incorporating associative elements, emotions, evaluations, and attitudes toward payment methods. Through an experimental quantitative study conducted in Sweden having a total of 213 respondents, we extend theory by finding support for the idea that irrationality occurs not only due to the design of a payment method, but also the emotions stemming from associations connected to, and experiences around, using that payment method. Results show how pain is lessened when a payment method is: 1) predominantly associated with purchasing hedonic products; 2) when the payment method is perceived better; 3) when perceived utility is higher; and 4) when there exists "blur". As a result, companies may want to minimize damage/pain rather than maximizing value, making designing for a sense of "blur" justifiable. Furthermore, for theory, we establish the importance of context, experience, attitudes and associations when studying pain of payment. Suggestions for further studies are given.

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