Cognition, Technology & Work

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 63–68 | Cite as

Increasing productivity through framing effects for interactive consumer choice

  • Jeffrey M. StibelEmail author
Original Article


Framing effects have a profound impact on most areas of human psychology. These effects have been studied extensively, but have not been applied broadly to how people interact with information on the Internet. The present paper provides evidence that frames influence people’s productivity on the Internet across a variety of tasks. Experiment 1 demonstrates that satisfaction is increased by presenting information in a list for tasks that involve simple processing of information. For more complex information, hierarchical navigation was shown to increase satisfaction significantly. Experiment 2 provides evidence that abstract information, such as monetary values, must be presented in terms of concrete frames. Specifically, we demonstrate that framing discounts in terms of dollars off, instead of additional goods received, tends to be less effective given the complexity of processing abstract information. In both cases, the type of information presented affects people’s levels of satisfaction and performance.


Framing effects Decision making Internet Behavioral economics Purchase behavior 



I am grateful to (in alphabetical order) James Anderson, Richard Chechile, Daniel Dennett, Cheryl Hevey, Demetrios Karis, Steven Reiss, Salvatore Soraci, and James Sorce for their invaluable ideas and comments. Sections of this paper were submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a graduate degree in Brain Science from the Department of Cognitive & Linguistic Sciences at Brown University.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.United Online Inc.MalibuUSA

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