Dominance Effects in the Wild

60 Pages Posted: 28 Mar 2022 Last revised: 25 Aug 2022

See all articles by Ariel Fridman

Ariel Fridman

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Rady School of Management

On Amir

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Rady School of Management

Karsten Hansen

University of California, San Diego (UCSD)

Date Written: May 12, 2022

Abstract

Dominance is the strongest form of preference relations that renders one alternative clearly preferred, and the other, well, irrelevant. An extensive literature has studied dominance effects using stylized lab experiments and found that, surprisingly, people’s preferences for options can depend on the presence of irrelevant options in the choice set. However, null results in some recent lab studies and lack of real-world evidence call into question whether, when, and how the effect exists. We identify an important moderator for the dominance effect – the ability to experience or sample alternatives – and test it in both a real marketplace for digital freelance services and a lab experiment. Further, consistent with a perceptual mechanism for dominance effects, we also find evidence for several additional moderators that help explain how the effect works, such as the count of dominated alternatives and the magnitude of dominance. This work is the first to be able to use consequential field data to shed light on when and why dominance effects occur, with implications for marketers, choice architects, user interface designers, and policymakers.

Keywords: Dominance Effects, Experienceability, Field Data, Context Effects

Suggested Citation

Fridman, Ariel and Amir, On and Hansen, Karsten, Dominance Effects in the Wild (May 12, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4049144 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4049144

Ariel Fridman (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Rady School of Management ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Rady School of Management
La Jolla, CA 92093
United States

On Amir

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Rady School of Management ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Rady School of Management
La Jolla, CA 92093
United States
858-534-2023 (Phone)
858-534-0745 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://management.ucsd.edu/faculty/directory/amir/

Karsten Hansen

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Mail Code 0502
La Jolla, CA 92093-0112
United States

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