Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 507242
Title Can a virtual supermarket bring realism into the lab? Comparing shopping behavior using virtual and pictorial store representations to behavior in a physical store
Author(s) Herpen, Erica van; Broek, Eva van den; Trijp, Hans C.M. van; Yu, Tian
Source Appetite 107 (2016). - ISSN 0195-6663 - p. 196 - 207.
Department(s) Marketing and Consumer Behaviour
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2016
Keyword(s) Consumer - Food - Supermarket - Virtual reality - Virtual store

Immersive virtual reality techniques present new opportunities for research into consumer behavior. The current study examines whether the increased realism of a virtual store compared to pictorial (2D) stimuli elicits consumer behavior that is more in line with behavior in a physical store. We examine the number, variety, and type of products selected, amount of money spent, and responses to price promotions and shelf display, in three product categories (fruit & vegetables, milk, and biscuits). We find that virtual reality elicits behavior that is more similar to behavior in the physical store compared to the picture condition for the number of products selected (Milk: Mstore = 1.19, Mvirtual = 1.53, Mpictures = 2.58) and amount of money spent (Milk: Mstore = 1.27, Mvirtual = 1.53, Mpictures = 2.60 Euro), and for the selection of products from different areas of the shelf, both vertically (purchases from top shelves, milk and biscuits: Pstore = 21.6%, Pvirtual = 33.4%, Ppictures = 50.0%) and horizontally (purchase from left shelf, biscuits: Pstore = 35.5%, Pvirtual = 53.3%, Ppictures = 66.7%). This indicates that virtual reality can improve realism in responses to shelf allocation. Virtual reality was not able to diminish other differences between lab and physical store: participants bought more products and spent more money (for biscuits and fruit & vegetables), bought more national brands, and responded more strongly to price promotions in both virtual reality and pictorial representations than in the physical store. Implications for the use of virtual reality in studies of consumer food choice behavior as well as for future improvement of virtual reality techniques are discussed.

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