Self-Scanning and Self-Control: A Field Experiment on Real-Time Feedback and Shopping Behavior

Montinari, Natalia ; Runnemark, Emma ; Wengström, Erik (2017) Self-Scanning and Self-Control: A Field Experiment on Real-Time Feedback and Shopping Behavior. Bologna: Dipartimento di Scienze economiche, p. 22. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsacta/5743. In: Quaderni - Working Paper DSE (1115). ISSN 2282-6483.
Full text available as:
License: Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial

Download (855kB) | Preview


Payment and checkout at retail stores is increasingly being replaced by automated systems. One recent technological invention in this area is mobile self-scanning in which customers carry a mobile scanner while shopping. Mobile self-scanners give real-time feedback on spending. The device increases price saliency and enables customers to keep track of the total amount spent. Using a field experiment, we test if mobile self-scanning affects shopping behavior. Consumers of two grocery stores were allocated randomly to use a mobile self-scanner or not. Overall, we find that using the self-scanner has a negative but insignificant effect on total amount spent. However, the response to using the scanner is heterogeneous and for customers with low self-control, it significantly reduces both their spending and number of items bought when using the mobile scanner. Moreover, we find that consumers with low self-control are more likely to use the self-scanner than individuals with high self-control. Taken together, our results suggest that sophisticated individuals, that is, individuals who are aware of their self-control problem, use the scanner to control their spending.

Document type
Monograph (Working Paper)
Montinari, NataliaUniversità di Bologna0000-0002-3718-9367
Runnemark, EmmaLund University
Wengström, ErikLund University0000-0002-1414-9055
Self-scanning, Self-control, Shopping Behavior, Real-time Feedback, Field Experiment
Deposit date
04 Dec 2017 09:09
Last modified
04 Dec 2017 09:09

Other metadata



Staff only: View the document