Research on shelf effects in traditional grocery stores shows that a product’s absolute and relative shelf positionmay strongly affect consumer choices. The authors examine whether and how such shelf effects translate to an online grocery context.We find that a product’s choice probability increases when presented on the first screen or located near focal items, especially when the latter are out-of-stock. These primacy and proximity effects have stronger impacts on choice decisions when assortments aremore difficult to evaluate and when a clear shelf organization facilitates the use of shelf-based choice heuristics.
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