The Demand for One-to-One Customization on the Internet: Evidence from the Retail PC Hardware Industry

Working Papers

We study the demand for one-to-one customization in the computer hardware industry. Using household browsing, transaction, and demographic data from the comScore database, we uncover evidence that geographically isolated households that are technologically savvy are more likely to buy and customize computer hardware online. Read More

How Do Recommender Systems Affect Sales Diversity? A Cross-Category Investigation via Randomized Field Experiment

Working Papers

We investigate the impact of several different recommender algorithms (e.g., Amazon.com’s “Consumers who bought this item also bought”), commonly used in ecommerce and online services, on sales volume and diversity, using field experiment data on movie sales from a top retailer in North America. Read More

To Boost Online Sales, Focus on Close-Knit Communities

David Bell

Word-of-mouth testimonials from consumers are effective in driving online sales. But these signals are even more powerful in communities where people have closer ties and trust each other, according to new research by Wharton marketing professor David Bell and Jae Lee. Read More

Agency Selling or Reselling? Channel Structures in Electronic Retailing

Published Research

In recent years, online retailers (also called e-tailers) have started allowing manufacturers direct access to their customers while charging a fee for providing this access, a format commonly referred to as agency selling. In this paper, we use a stylized theoretical model to answer a key question that e-tailers are facing: When should they use an agency selling format instead of using the more conventional reselling format?Read More

The (Pro) Consumer Genome: The Rise of Customer Agents in the Personal Data Market

MBA Research Fellowship paper

Commerce – the activities related to the buying and selling of goods and services — relies on an effective exchange of personal data. In its simplest form, the seller solicits personal information from the buyer (what she likes, what she doesn’t, what she’s looking to spend) and the buyer responds with data that either helps or hurts the chances of transacting a deal. If the information swap is successful, a sale may result. And so the sharing of data greases the wheels of trade.Read More

Price Effects in Online Product Reviews: An Analytical Model and Empirical Analysis

Published Research

Consumer reviews may reflect not only perceived quality but also the difference between quality and price (perceived value). In markets where product prices change frequently, these price-influenced reviews may be biased as a signal of product quality when used by consumers possessing no knowledge of historical prices.Read More