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Keywords:

  • evaluability;
  • joint evaluation;
  • preference reversal;
  • prediction error

ABSTRACT

This research examines sellers' price-setting behavior and discovers a naturally occurring mismatch between sellers and buyers: Sellers who make a price decision often consider alternative prices and engage in the joint evaluation mode, whereas buyers who make a purchase decision see only the finally set price and are in the single evaluation mode. This mismatch in evaluation modes leads sellers to overpredict buyers' price sensitivity and underprice their products. However, these effects apply only to products unfamiliar to buyers and without salient reference prices and can be alleviated if sellers are encouraged to mimic single evaluation when making pricing decisions. These propositions are empirically tested and verified. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.