Questioning the choice overload effect through design research

Maria Valéria Assis, Leandro Tonetto

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Choice overload is a negative effect caused by a great variety of options in the user's choice experience. Researches have shown that, with the increase in the number of options, pleasure and satisfaction were negatively affected. Our aim was to measure the impact of the diversity of alternatives in the beauty and hygiene segment over the user choice experience. In an experiment (n=96), the diverse quantity of choice was manipulated using different types of packaging, a characteristic element of design projects. Based on sales catalog's information from a major company in this segment, three experimental conditions were generated: The first had 50% of the average amount of products found on the catalogs; the second had the average number of options found for the products; the third encompassed 50% more from the mean options from the catalogs. Results indicated the opposite of other researches on choice overload: users had more positive experiences when facing the biggest quantity of options (50% above the average of the quantity found in the market). These results have implications to product portfolio planning and can be used as a base to provide pleasurable experiences to consumers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings - D and E 2016
Subtitle of host publication10th International Conference on Design and Emotion - Celebration and Contemplation
PublisherUniversidad de los Andes
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9789461867254
Publication statusPublished - 2016
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Design and Emotion - Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 27 Sept 201630 Sept 2016
Conference number: 10


ConferenceInternational Conference on Design and Emotion
Abbreviated titleD and E


  • Amount of alternatives
  • Choice experience
  • Choice overload


Dive into the research topics of 'Questioning the choice overload effect through design research'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this