Why expect lower prices online? Empirical examination in online and store-based retailers

Shao Kang Lo, Ai Yun Hsieh, Yu Ping Chiu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


This study extends prior research by examining consumer expectations regarding the lower price of products found in online shopping stores and considers the role of overhead cost in consumer decision-making. By using a laboratory experiment method, we verified the difference in the perceived overhead cost between the two types of retailers and the relationship between perceived overhead cost and internal reference pricing. This study involved 123 subjects. The findings show that consumers perceive online retailers' overhead costs as lower than store-based retailers' overhead costs and that lower perceived overhead prices cause consumers to have lower internal reference prices. This study supplements e-commerce research, can assist retailers in understanding consumers' perceptions of overhead cost and product prices, and serves as a reference for online retailers attempting to create pricing strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-38
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Electronic Commerce Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Internal Reference Price
  • Online Retailers
  • Overhead Cost
  • Price Perception
  • Store-Based Retailers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications


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