Consumers’ behavioural responses to price promotions of organic products: An introspective pre-study and an online field experiment

Jyrki Isojärvi, Jaakko Aspara

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikelVetenskapligPeer review

4 Citeringar (Scopus)


While most marketing research on organic products refers to the premium price levels of organic products, little research exists on consumers’ behavioural responses to price promotions or discounts of organic products. The present study aims to fill this research gap.
To develop alternative hypotheses about consumers’ behavioural responses to price promotions of organic fast-moving consumer good (FMCG) products, the authors used the researcher-introspection method in a pre-study. To test the hypotheses developed based on the pre-study, the authors conducted a field experiment on online advertising of an FMCG sold in drugstores. In the field experiment, the authors exposed consumers to an online ad featuring either a price promotion (−20%) or the regular price of the product. The ads also varied in terms of whether they contained explicit organic claims or not, and whether they included implicit organic cues or not.
The price promotion increased the clickthrough rate of the ad both when combined with an explicit organic claim and when combined with the implicit cue of green product pack. The results suggest that consumers do not have significant suspicions about price promotions of organic products, but rather presume that the price promotion of an organic FMCG product is a periodical promotional action, similar to the price promotions for conventional, non-organic products. Also, consumers seem to assume that the regular prices of organic FMCG products are so high that the retailer/manufacturer can well afford periodic price discounts.
Research limitations/implications
The present research shifts the focus of organic marketing research from the premium price levels to the effectiveness of price promotions and discounts. Further, the present results contrast with certain earlier studies that have questioned the effectiveness of price promotions for organic products.
Practical implications
The results have different implications for marketing managers of brands not yet providing organic product versions in the market, of brands producing non-organic products, which cannot easily be rendered organic, and of brands offering organic products in the market.
This is, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, the first empirical study and field experiment on price promotions of organic products, including explicit organic claims.
Referentgranskad vetenskaplig tidskriftEuropean Journal of Marketing
Sidor (från-till)1804-1825
Antal sidor22
StatusPublicerad - 10.03.2023
MoE-publikationstypA1 Originalartikel i en vetenskaplig tidskrift


  • Marketing Effectiveness and Profitability
  • 512 Företagsekonomi

Styrkeområden och områden med hög potential (AoS och AoHP)

  • AoS: Konkurrensanalys och servicestrategi - Kvantitativt konsumentbeteende och konkurrensekonomi


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