Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

What Are You Getting? Consumer Behavior In Restaurants

Date:
September 21, 2009
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
Consumers follow a predictable pattern when it comes to ordering food and drinks, according new study. It seems people in groups tend to seek variety when making initial orders, then gravitate toward similar choices, and then, as the group consensus grows, to move away from popular choices.

Consumers follow a predictable pattern when it comes to ordering food and drinks, according new study in the Journal of Consumer Research. It seems people in groups tend to seek variety when making initial orders, then gravitate toward similar choices, and then, as the group consensus grows, to move away from popular choices.

"Our study shows empirically that consumers are susceptible to both conformist and variety-seeking tendencies," write authors Pascale Quester (University of Adelaide, Australia) and Alexandre Steyer (Sorbonne-Assas, Paris, France). "They like to differentiate themselves from a growing minority or an overwhelming majority, but tend to conform in between."

The authors conducted a study on candy bars in a lab, and then moved on to a real-life setting of a restaurant called Flam's in Paris. They sought out a situation where a drink was included in a package (Flam's Plus) that included an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert. In this situation, price would not be a factor, since the drinks were included, and people were unlikely to share drinks, as they might share food in a Chinese restaurant.

"We decided that consumers' choice of pre-meal drinks within a Flam's Plus order would provide the best and most reliable context for determining whether and how individuals' choices were influenced by other's choices, in a condition when individual orders would be made public by the order process."

They analyzed the data from 70 tables with two or more patrons where everyone ordered the Flam's Plus. The tables ranged from two to 18 customers. The results of the restaurant study showed people sought variety as long as others' choice of the same item did not achieve a threshold level of group unanimity. "However, when others' choice of an alternative reaches 30 percent or so, variety seeking weakens," the authors explain. "Beyond 60 or 70 percent, variety-seeking has been reversed and becomes conformism…When an alternative becomes very dominant (with over 80 to 90 percent of other selecting it), variety-seeking reappears."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Chicago Press Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Quester et al. Revisiting Individual Choices in Group Settings: The Long and Winding (Less Traveled) Road? Journal of Consumer Research, 2009; 090908155224023 DOI: 10.1086/644750

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "What Are You Getting? Consumer Behavior In Restaurants." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090921162238.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2009, September 21). What Are You Getting? Consumer Behavior In Restaurants. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090921162238.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "What Are You Getting? Consumer Behavior In Restaurants." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090921162238.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Work Can Be Stressful, But Is Unemployment Worse?

Work Can Be Stressful, But Is Unemployment Worse?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) A new study shows stress at work can be hard on your health, but people who are unemployed might be at even greater risk of health problems. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Google (Kind Of) Complies With 'Right To Be Forgotten Law'

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Google says it is following Europe's new "Right To Be Forgotten Law," which eliminates user information upon request, but only to a certain degree. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Stroke Signs: Three Hour Deadline

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Sometimes the signs of a stroke are far from easy to recognize. Learn from one young father’s story on the signs of a stroke. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Grain Brain May Be Harming Us

Ivanhoe (July 31, 2014) Could eating carbohydrates be harmful to our brain health? Find out what one neurologist says about changing our diets. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins