Retail customers' self-awareness: the deindividuation effects of others

Uhrich, Sebastian and Tombs, Alastair (2014) Retail customers' self-awareness: the deindividuation effects of others. Journal of Business Research, 67 7: 1439-1446. doi:10.1016/j.jbusres.2013.07.023

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Author Uhrich, Sebastian
Tombs, Alastair
Title Retail customers' self-awareness: the deindividuation effects of others
Journal name Journal of Business Research   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0148-2963
Publication date 2014-07-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.jbusres.2013.07.023
Volume 67
Issue 7
Start page 1439
End page 1446
Total pages 8
Place of publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Elsevier
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The presence of others often affects retail shopping behavior. Other customers tend to increase one's self-awareness and cause negative self-conscious emotions. This research's findings suggest fellow customers also mitigate focal customers' evaluative concerns. Deindividuation theory, which posits that other customers create anonymity and reduce self-awareness, helps explain this phenomenon. A laboratory experiment and a quasi-experimental field study in a retail setting support the notion that the presence of other customers creates a deindividuation effect on a focal customer during unwanted social evaluation from salespeople. Results show a small group of other customers resulted in lower levels of emotional discomfort and behavioral inhibition than either an empty store or a larger group size, suggesting a U shape relationship.
Keyword Customer presence
Public self-awareness
Deindividuation theory
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Available online: 17 August 2013.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
UQ Business School Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 2 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 09 Oct 2013, 22:41:13 EST by Karen Morgan on behalf of UQ Business School