Title: Investigating consumer confusion proneness cross-culturally: empirical evidence from the USA, Germany, and Thailand

Authors: Gianfranco Walsh; Andrew Lindridge; Vincent-Wayne Mitchell; Alexander Deseniss; Axel Lippold

Addresses: Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena, Germany ' Open University, UK ' CASS Business School, London, UK ' University of Applied Sciences, Flensburg, Germany ' Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences, Salzgitter, Germany

Abstract: With ever increasing amounts of marketplace information, decreasing inter-brand differences, and increasingly complex products, confusion is becoming a global problem for consumers. Although confusion has been identified as a problem for consumers and marketers in many countries most measures of consumer confusion have been developed in western countries, including Walsh et al.'s (2007) consumer confusion proneness (CCP) scale, and have not been shown to be cross-culturally valid. Thus, relatively little is known about the cross-cultural differences in confusion proneness. Using the three-dimensional, nine-item CCP scale developed in Germany, this study explores cross-cultural differences in consumer proneness in the United States as well as in Germany and Thailand. The results reveal that some factor loadings of the CCP scale are not invariant across samples and that unique factor structures emerge for the US and Thai samples. The article concludes by discussing theoretical and managerial implications as well as study limitations.

Keywords: consumer confusion proneness; CCP scale; culture; Germany; Thailand; USA; United States; validation; cross-cultural differences; marketplace information overload; inter-brand differences; complex products.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMABS.2016.081544

International Journal of Markets and Business Systems, 2016 Vol.2 No.3, pp.226 - 242

Received: 05 Sep 2016
Accepted: 16 Sep 2016

Published online: 12 Jan 2017 *

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