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EMAC 2020 Annual Conference

Increasing Customers’ Willingness to Pay for Digital Products: The Contingent Role of Price Communication

Published: May 27, 2020


Benedikt Alberternst, University of Paderborn; Carina Witte, University of Paderborn; Andreas Eggert, University of Paderborn


digital products; price communication; willingness to pay


Many customers have a low willingness to pay for digital products. Yet, insights on how to increase customers’ willingness to pay are scarce. The present research investigates price communication, i.e. accompanying information that justifies the price of the digital product, as a means for increasing customers’ willingness to pay for digital products. Drawing on equity theory, this research theoretically argues and empirically shows that price communication (vs. no price communication) increases customers’ perceived price fairness and willingness to pay. Conducting a scenario experiment with a fitness app, we show that price communication boosts willingness to pay by 83%. The effect is strengthened as the degree of customers’ technology readiness increases.