UNDER REVIEW: A systematic review and meta-analysis of consumers' behavioral responses to interpersonal touch

Image credit: Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash


As the marketplace becomes increasing global, so too does our understanding of consumers’behavior responses to different stimuli. One such stimulus that consumers are especiallysensitive to is interpersonal touch. Our findings show that results from over 30 years of researchindicate that consumers generally respond positively to being touch in various businessscenarios, however, they respond negatively when touched by other consumers and notemployees. Overall there is medium sized positive effect on behavioral outcomes for touch, witha stronger effect for consumers from European countries, some of which are especially knownfor the high acceptance of touching behaviors. Interestingly, we did not find a strong influence ofmany of the study-level differences, such as the gender make-up of the sample. Moving forward,in addition to behavior, consumer attitudes and evaluations could be considered in this metaanalysis as well, as many of the study included evaluations of the toucher and the firm.

Journal of Services Marketing
Louis J. Zmich
Louis J. Zmich
Owner of Zmich Consulting Marketing and Sales Doctoral Candidate

Zmich Consulting LLC specializes in comercial and hand-coded website development, social media management and content creation, along with Google analytical guidance on how to improve the success of your business.