Effects of consumers’ construal levels on post-impulse purchase emotions

Taku Togawa, Hiroaki Ishii, Naoto Onzo, Rajat Roy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
360 Downloads (Pure)


The purpose of this paper is to examine how abstract vs concrete mindsets impact consumers’ post-purchase affective states. Drawing on construal level theory, the study examines when consumers experience “pleasure” or “guilt” after impulse buying.

The basic premises of this research was tested using multiple studies. Study 1 was conducted in the field, the second study engaged an online survey, while the third study used a laboratory experiment.

After impulse buying, consumers with abstract mindsets reported strong feelings of pleasure, whereas those with concrete mindsets experienced profound guilt.

Research limitations/implications
Research on affective responses (i.e. pleasure and guilt) following impulse purchase is limited. However, the present study helps understand an important research question: when do consumers feel pleasure (or guilt) after impulse buying?

Practical implications
Marketers can frame messages that align with abstract mindsets to enhance pleasure and reduce guilt after impulse buying.

Social implications
Policymakers can persuade consumers to refrain from making impulsive decisions through communication that reminds them of past impulse purchase behaviour, by triggering a concrete mindset.

This research extends the literature on post-purchase effects by demonstrating that consumers’ mindsets determine the intensity of their affective state after impulse buying.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-282
Number of pages14
JournalMarketing Intelligence and Planning
Issue number3
Early online date22 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 13 May 2020


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