Understanding consumer sophistication and the moderating role of culture in the tourism context

Sharon Soroker, Ron Berger, Shalom Levy, Israel D. Nebenzahl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Purpose:-While the concept of consumer sophistication (CS) has been the focus of various studies on consumers’ consumption behavior, limited research has empirically investigated its psychographic characteristics in the tourism industry. Furthermore, only scant information exists about the relationships between consumer sophistication, consumption performance and consumer’s culture. The aims of this study are to conceptualize a multidimensional construct of consumer sophistication and empirically examine the construct and next, to investigate the nature of its relationship with consumption performance and the role of culture in this relationship. Design/methodology/approach:-Data were collected through a field survey taken from a wide-range of tourism travelers from various nationalities. The study employs factor analysis methods following path analysis and uses Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). Findings:-Using higher-order construct procedure reveals that the following five variables: Market Maven, External Search, Risk Avoidance, Product Knowledge and Negotiation Intention are significant facets of consumer sophistication. The results further suggest that consumer sophistication relates to consumers’ consumption performance and that culture, acts as a moderating factor. Practical implications:-The study offers practitioners a creative way to delineate market segmentation. Information on consumer sophistication can help manufacturers and retailers in determining discount amounts, for more targeted price promotions. Originality/value:-The originality of this study lies in the conceptualization of a multidimensional construct of consumer sophistication and better understanding of its effect in different cultures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-64
Number of pages36
JournalInternational Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Administration
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2023

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  • Consumer sophistication
  • conceptualization
  • consumption performance
  • culture
  • multidimensional construct


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