Consumers often find themselves challenged by the conflicting desires to seek uniqueness versus conformity, and thus seek some degree of balance. In a series of six studies we show that presenting each options’ product-related information in a unique color, as opposed to all product-related information presented in black-on-white, partially satiates the desire for uniqueness, thus amplifying the compromise effect. Consumers facing color presentation formats choose the middle, conforming option more often, yet perceive their choice as more unique. This color effect is not realized if each option's attributes are presented in different colors, but all options use a consistent color scheme, as is often the case in on-line retailing sites such as Amazon.com. Having to justify one's choice moderates the color effect. The practical take-away is that consumers’ choices can be influenced by using unique colors to present option-related product information, a variable that is entirely independent of the options’ performance characteristics. Two field studies confirm this finding, one using a plain background versus a colored background in a product display and the other using product containers that are either in plain white or wrapped in unique colors.
Kim, J., Spence, M. T., & Marshall, R. (2018). The Color of Choice: The Influence of Presenting Product Information in Color on the Compromise Effect. Journal of Retailing, 94(2), 167-185. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jretai.2018.01.002