Understanding Malaysian Consumers’ Willingness to Buy Organic Personal Care Products

the Moderating Effect of Customer Characteristics

  • Yuanfeng Cai Stamford International University
Keywords: organic personal care products, quality cues, perceived quality, willingness to buy, Malaysia


Different from previous study that based mainly on a customer perspective, this study served as an early attempt to propose and empirically test a conceptual framework to understand consumers’ organic personal care product buying behavior from a joint perspective (product and consumer) in Malaysia.

The results of this study indicate that sensory appeals and natural content appear to be two salient quality cues that consumers used to form their perceived quality toward organic personal care products, which in turn, lead to their willingness to buy the products. Contrary to the prior study, the results of our study reveal that intrinsic cues (i.e., natural content and sensory appeal) played a more important role in influencing consumers’ organic purchase decision than extrinsic cues (i.e., price premium, distinctive packaging) did. Moreover, consumers who have stronger price-quality schema are more likely to rely on price premium to infer product quality than those who have weaker price-quality schema. Compared with novice consumers, expert consumers are less likely to rely on product quality in making their purchase decision. The findings provide organic marketers and manufacturers valuable insights into developing effective communication and product development strategies.