The Effect Of Scarcity Types On Consumer Preference In The High-End Sneaker Market

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Nick Cassidy (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Dave McEvoy

Abstract: The high-end sneaker market consists of dedicated collectors and enthusiasts, with several unique aspects to their purchasing behavior. Collectors spend exorbitant amounts of money on the secondary market for sold out sneakers, only to use the shoe for non-athletic purposes. As this market is relatively new, there is still little research available concerning the behavior of these consumers. Sneakers differ in scarcity amount and type. Some sneakers are widely available, others are scarce due to high demand, and still others are scarce due to low supply. While most collectors own sneakers of multiple different types and levels of scarcity, it is unclear whether there is a general preference towards a single type of scarcity, and how these different types of scarcity affect consumer decisions in this market. Through an online survey, research was conducted on the purchasing behavior and scarcity preference of consumers within this market. We find that sneaker collectors have an overwhelming preference towards supply-scarce products, with no significant difference in preferences for demand-scarce products and widely available products. This preference for limited-release products is motivated by consumers’ usage of sneakers as conspicuous consumption products, in which products are purchased to signify characteristics about the owner.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Cassidy, N. (2018). "The Effect Of Scarcity Types On Consumer Preference In The High-End Sneaker Market." Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2018
Sneaker, scarcity, supply and demand, conspicuous consumption

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