RIEB Discussion Paper Series No.2020-18

RIEB Discussion Paper Series No.2020-18


Unplanned Purchase of New Products


Manufacturers are eager to recoup the investment on developing new products by promoting the unplanned first (trial) purchase on the consumer's first sight and by encouraging the succeeding repurchases because they had put in large amount of resources for developing new product. However, studies are yet to investigate the relationship between unplanned purchases and the succeeding repurchase for new product because data on this, including consumers' extensive purchase history and a questionnaire on unplanned buying, are simultaneously unavailable. This study employed a novel "instant research" method to obtain both the purchase history and a questionnaire on impulse buying. Regulatory focus theory, which has recently received considerable attention in psychology and marketing, is helpful in predicting the result. Promotion-focus positively affects unplanned buying of new products as well as customer satisfaction, and leads to an increase in subsequent repeat purchases. The results are consistent with our expectations, indicating that if the first purchase of a new product is unplanned, the succeeding repeat purchases tend to increase compared to a planned trial purchase. We also found that this propensity is more prominent for customers who have higher loyalty to the same or similar category product.


Unplanned purchase; New product; Regulatory focus theory


Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration
Kobe University
Rokkodai-cho, Nada-ku, Kobe
657-8501 Japan
Phone: +81-78-803-7036
FAX: +81-78-803-7059

Takahiro HOSHINO
Department of Economics, Keio University
RIKEN Center for Advanced Intelligence Project