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The effect of choice options in e-commerce: Influence of high and low entropy options on choice behavior of people with different personalities

  • This thesis investigates the effect choice options in e-commerce applications have on consumers’ decision making. Previous research showed that a large number of options can affect consumers negatively. However, the conditions for such choice overload are unclear. After reviewing the existing research, the amount of information (entropy) contained in a choice set and individual differences were determined as possible influencing factors in an online environment. In a choice experiment, choice sets with varying information loads and an assessment of the Big Five personality traits were used to test the impact of the two identified factors on choice avoidance behavior. Results from chi-square-tests and a logistic regression model suggest choice overload but without entropy having an effect. A logistic regression model revealed that extraverted consumers are easier overloaded. A low Neuroticism score was found to be related to less occurrence of a too-much-choice-effect. Consumers with a high Openness score on the other hand choose one of the presented options more often and were therefore less often overwhelmed by the assortment. An interaction effect between personality and the amount of entropy was not found. These findings extend the research on choice overload and offer valuable input for marketers targeting consumers online.

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Author:Timo Kienzler
Referee:Paul TaylorGND
Document Type:Master's Thesis
Year of Completion:2017
Granting Institution:Hochschule Furtwangen
Date of final exam:2017/05/30
Release Date:2018/06/05
Tag:Big five inventory; Choice complexity e-commerce; Choice overload; Entropy; Five factor model; Information load; Online shopping; Personality; Too-much-choice-effect
Page Number:120
Degree Program:IMM - International Management
Functional area:Marketing
Open-Access-Status: Open Access 
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt