The impact of packaging design on health product perceptions

Riley, Debra, Martins da Silva, Peter and Behr, Sabrina (2015) The impact of packaging design on health product perceptions. In: Marketing and Business Development (MBD) International Conference 2015; 25-27 Jun 2015, Bucharest, Romania. ISSN (online) 2344-5130


Packaging design has been studied in a variety of contexts but findings remain inconsistent, particularly on the impact of individual elements (e.g. Mitchell & Papvassiliou, 1999; Becker, Rompay, Schifferstein and Galetzka, 2011; Siloyoi & Speece, 2007). Although several studies have found visual cues (picture, typography, colour) to be the most impactful on consumer attention and attitude (e.g. Folkes & Matta, 2004; Silayoi & Speece, 2004), most studies have focused on other elements such as size and shape, (e.g. Ares & Deliza, 2010) and verbal cues (e.g. Klimchuk & Krasovec, 2013). Responding to recent calls for more research (Orth, Campana & Malkewitz 2010), this study investigates the impact of both visual elements and verbal elements on consumer perceptions, specifically looking at product ‘healthiness’. To date, there is relatively little research looking at health product perceptions in the marketing literature, despite recognition that health is ‘the most significant trend and innovation driver in the global and foods drink market’ (Meziane, 2007). This paper applies conjoint analysis to examine the relative importance of four product attributes representing visual and verbal cues: level of information provided on the label (low vs high); presence of an organic ‘kite’ mark (yes/no); colour (green/orange) and the product image on the label (transparent window vs product photo). It is worth noting that despite being widely found on health food packaging, transparent windows have been considered in only one paper to date (Sioutis, 2011). Three product categories were tested (baby food, soup and coffee) across 288 UK participants. The results find verbal cues to be most important, with the amount of information provided being the key driver.

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