Brand typically plays a decisive role in influencing consumer purchases. This premise is particularly interesting in the case of an information technology (IT) product, such as a laptop computer, which is often composed of an amalgamation of electronic components (e.g., sound card, memory, and so on). Thus, an IT product is represented not only by the primary brand (also known as the host brand) it carries, but also by the brands of its apparatuses (also known as component brands). Such product nature has afforded opportunity for lesser-known IT product merchants to leverage component brands to compete against established (i.e., better-known) brands. Drawing on theory of salience effect, this study examines the extent to which component brands affect consumer-purchasing choices. A set of experiments was subsequently conducted. Results reveal that lesser-known IT product vendors can increase the number of established component brands (quantity) to positively influence consumer product quality assessment and purchase choice. However, incorporation of a feature to highlight good-rated component brands (quality) can positively affect consumer purchase choice, but not overall IT product quality assessment. These findings reveal dissimilar influences of number (quantity) and brand ratings (quality) on consumer response to an IT product.
Huang, Liqiang; Tan, Chuan-Hoo; Goh, Khim Yong; and Wei, Kwok-Kee, "THE EFFECTS OF COMPONENT BRANDS ON CONSUMER CHOICE AND EVALUATION OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY PRODUCTS" (2014). PACIS 2014 Proceedings. 73.