Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32586
On-Line Impulse Buying and Cognitive Dissonance: The Moderating Role of the Positive Affective State

Authors: G. Mattia, A. Di Leo, L. Principato


The purchase impulsiveness is preceded by a lack of self-control: consequently, it is legitimate to believe that a consumer with a low level of self-control can result in a higher probability of cognitive dissonance. Moreover, the process of purchase is influenced by the pre-existing affective state in a considerable way. With reference to on-line purchases, digital behavior cannot be merely ascribed to the rational sphere, given the speed and ease of transactions and the hedonistic dimension of purchases. To our knowledge, this research is among the first cases of verification of the effect of moderation exerted by the positive affective state in the on-line impulse purchase of products with a high expressive value such as a smartphone on the occurrence of cognitive dissonance. To this aim, a moderation analysis was conducted on a sample of 212 impulsive millennials buyers. Three scales were adopted to measure the constructs of interest: IBTS for impulsivity, PANAS for the affective state, Sweeney for cognitive dissonance. The analysis revealed that positive affective state does not affect the onset of cognitive dissonance.

Keywords: Cognitive dissonance, impulsive buying, online shopping, online consumer behavior.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 1655


[1] Amos, C., Holmes, G.R., Keneson, W.C. (2014). A meta-analysis of consumer: impulsive buying. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Vol. 21, No. 2.
[2] Babu, P.G., Manoj E. (2009). Cognitive dissonance and purchase involvement in the consumer behavior context. 6kmThe IUP Journal of Marketing Management, Vol.8, No.3.
[3] Bilgihan, A. (2016). Gen Y customer loyalty in on-line shopping: An integrated model of trust, user experience and branding. Computers in Human Behavior, 61, 103-113.
[4] Cao, Y., Lu, Y., Gupta, S., & Yang, S. (2015). The effects of differences between e-commerce and m-commerce on the consumers' usage transfer from on-line to mobile channel. IJMC, 13(1), 51-70.
[5] Chang, C., Tseng, A. (2014). The post-purchase communication strategies for supporting on-line impulsive buying. Computers in Human Behavior, Vol. 39.
[6] Clover, V. T. (1950). Relative importance of impulse-buying in retail stores. The Journal of Marketing, 15(1), 66-70.
[7] Connor, H., Shaw, S., & Fairhurst, D. (2008). Engaging a new generation of graduates. Education+ training.
[8] Constantinides, E. (2004). Influencing the on-line consumer's behavior: the web experience. Internet research, 14(2), 111-126.
[9] Einav, L., Levin, J., Popov, I., & Sundaresan, N. (2014). Growth, adoption, and use of mobile E-commerce. American Economic Review, 104(5), 489-94.
[10] eMarketer (2018). Global Proximity Mobile Payment Users: eMarketer's Estimates for 2016-2021.
[11] Festinger, L. (1957). A theory of cognitive dissonance. Stanford University Press.
[12] Fornell, C., Larcker, D.F. (1981). Evaluating structural equation models with unobservable variables and measurement error. Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. 18, No. 1, pp. 39-50.
[13] George, B.P., Yaoyuneyong, G. (2010). Impulse buying and cognitive dissonance: a study conducted among the spring break student shoppers-Young Consumers, Vol. 11, No. 4.
[14] Goldenson, R.M. (1984). Longman Dictionary of Psychology and Psychiatry, Kaplan Publishing.
[15] Hoch, S. J., Lowenstein, G. F. (1991). Time-inconsistent preferences and consumer self-control. Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 17, pp. 492-507.
[16] Iram, M., Chacharkar, D.Y. (2017). Model of impulse buying behavior. BVIMSR’s Journal of Management Research, Vol. 9, No. 1.
[17] Jonas, E., Graupamann, V., Frey, D. (2006). The influence of mood on the search for supporting versus conflicting information: dissonance reduction as a means of mood regulation? Pers. Soc. Psychol. B.; 32.
[18] Kim, A.J., Johnson, K.K. (2016). Power of consumers using social media: examining the influences of brand-related user-generated content on Facebook. Computers in Human Behavior, Vol. 58.
[19] Kim, S., Eastin, M.S. (2011). Hedonic tendencies and the on-line consumer: an investigation of the on-line shopping process. Journal of Internet Commerce, Vol.10, No. 1.
[20] Koski, N. (2004). Impulse buying on the internet: encouraging and discouraging factors. Frontiers of E-Business Research, Vol. 4, pp. 23-35.
[21] Rose, R. (2001). On the negative effects of e-commerce: a socio-cognitive exploration of unregulated on-line buying. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Vol. 6, No. 3.
[22] Lee, T., Park, C., & Jun, J. (2014). Two faces of mobile shopping: Self-efficacy and impulsivity. International Journal of E-Business Research, 10(1), 15–32.
[23] Lin, C., Chen, C., Wang, S. (2018). The influence of impulse buying toward consumer loyalty in on-line shopping: a regulatory focus theory perspective. Journal of Ambient Intelligence and Humanized Computing, July.
[24] Martínez-Ruiz, M. P., Gómez-Suárez, M., Jiménez-Zarco, A. I., & Izquierdo-Yusta, A. (2017). From Consumer Experience to Affective Loyalty: Challenges and Prospects in the Psychology of Consumer Behavior 3.0. Frontiers in psychology, 8, 2224.
[25] Nunnally, J.C. (1978). Psychometric theory, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2nd Edition.
[26] O’Guinn, T.C., Faber, R.J. (1989). Compulsive buying: a phenomenological exploration. Journal of consumer Research, Vol. 16, pp. 147-157.
[27] Peck, J., Childers, T.L. (2006). If I touch it I have to have it: individual and environmental influences on impulse purchasing. Journal of Business Research, 59(6), 765-769.
[28] Petty, R.E., Cacioppo, J.T., (1986). The elaboration likelihood model of persuasion. In: Berkowitz, L., editor. Advances in experimental social psychology (vol. XIX). New York: Academic Press.
[29] Rook, D. W. (1987). The Buying Impulse. Journal of Consumer Research, 14(2), 189-197.
[30] Rook, D.W., Fisher, R.J. (1995). Normative influences on impulse buying behavior. Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 22, pp. 305-313.
[31] Shah, M., Guha, S., Shrivastava, U. (2012). Effect of emerging trends in retail sector on impulse buying behaviour. International Journal of EMS, Vol. 3, No. 2.
[32] Sharma, P., Sivakumaran, B., Marshall, R. (2010). Impulse buying and variety seeking: a trait correlates perspective. Journal of Business Research, Vol. 63 No. 3, pp. 276-283.
[33] Stern, H. (1962). The Significance of Impulse Buying Today. Journal of Marketing, April, 59-62.
[34] Sweeney, J.C. (2000). Cognitive dissonance after purchase: a multidimensional scale. Psychology & Marketing, Vol.17.
[35] Verplanken, B., Herabadi, A.G., Perry, J.A., Silvera, D.H. (2005). Consumer style and health: the role of impulsive buying in unhealthy eating. Psychology and Health, Vol. 20.
[36] Weinberg, P., Gottwald, W. (1982). Impulsive consumer buying as a result of emotions. Journal of Business research, Vol. 10, No. 1.
[37] Watson, D., Clark, L.A., Tellegen, A. (1988). Development and validation of brief measures of positive and negative affect: the PANAS scales. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 54, No. 6.