Can Consumers Forgo the Need to Touch Products? An Examination of the Compensatory Role of Moods

Document Type

Conference Paper


With the growth of various forms of non-touch media (e.g., catalog and Internet shopping), individual differences in need for haptic information and the consequences of an inability to touch the products are important to conceptualize and measure. Need for touch (NFT) is the preference for extracting and utilizing information through the haptic system (Peck and Childers 2003a). When touch is not available, compensational strategies are required to contribute to the success of retailers specifically those doing business via non-touch media. Haptic compensational tactics provide haptic cues (e.g., written description of haptic information along with pictures of products) to consumers (Peck and Childers 2003b). Non-haptic compensational tactics (i.e., meaningful extrinsic non-haptic cues) could also moderate the motivation to obtain haptic information through touch. This study is an attempt to examine the compensatory role of moods on consumers’ need for touch in order to affect their online purchase decisions. Moods can influence consumers' judgments in two ways (Forgas 1995). First, the mood state can be used as information leading to mood congruent judgments. Thus, depending on whether individuals are in a good or bad mood while evaluating a target product, they may (mis)attribute this feeling to the target and use it as a basis for their evaluation (Cheng and Yeung 2008). Thus, we expect that: H1: (a) Purchase intentions and (b) product confidence levels are higher in an online context when the consumer is in a positive mood as compared to a negative mood.

Publication Title

The Sustainable Global Marketplace

Publication Date


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