The effects of scarcity on consumer decision journeys

Rebecca Hamilton*, Debora Thompson, Sterling Bone, Lan Nguyen Chaplin, Vladas Griskevicius, Kelly Ann Shriner, Ronald Hill, Deborah Roedder John, Chiraag Mittal, Thomas O’Guinn, Paul Piff, Caroline Roux, Anuj Shah, Meng Zhu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

185 Scopus citations


Research in marketing often begins with two assumptions: that consumers are able to choose among desirable products, and that they have sufficient resources to buy them. However, many consumer decision journeys are constrained by a scarcity of products and/or a scarcity of resources. We review research in marketing, psychology, economics and sociology to construct an integrative framework outlining how these different types of scarcity individually and jointly influence consumers at various stages of their decision journeys. We outline avenues for future research and discuss implications for developing consumer-based marketing strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)532-550
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of the Academy of Marketing Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 15 2019


  • Consumer decision making
  • Customer journeys
  • Product scarcity
  • Resource scarcity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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