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Friday, May 05, 2006

Fashion: Clothes Shoppers Fear "Cooties"

New research shows shoppers are much less likely to buy an article of clothing if they think another person has already touched it.

"Consumer contact with products is a double-edged sword. Prior research has shown people like to touch products, but now we've found that they really don't like it if someone else has touched them first," said Dr. Jennifer Argo a professor in the University of Alberta School of Business.

Argo and her colleagues found that not only were shoppers much less inclined to buy a shirt if they believed someone else had already touched it, consumers also indicated that the value of the product had been diminished if they knew it had been touched.

The researchers also determined that "disgust" was the underlying reason for the participants' opinions, and that the level of disgust increased as the perception of the extent to which the article had been touched or tried on also increased.

The results of the research are published this month in the Journal of Marketing.

via Consumer Affairs

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