When Financial Platforms Become Gamified, Consumers’ Risk Preferences Change

Christoph Hüller, Martin Reimann, Caleb Warren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Does gamifying financial platforms change consumers’ willingness to take financial risk? A major trend in the financial industry has been to make financial platforms gamelike experiences by adding features like leaderboards. However, despite the growing interest in this approach, no research has systematically investigated whether and how gamification influences consumers’ financial risk taking. Six experiments (N = 3;766) demonstrate that when investment apps are equipped with game elements, consumers make substantially riskier choices. Gamification boosts financial risk taking because the presence (vs. absence) of game elements motivates consumers to pursue an additional goal (i.e., winning the game). Once this goal has been reached, consumers are no longer more risk-taking, highlighting when and why gamification entices financial risk taking. This research validates recent suspicions about the addictive potential of gamified financial platforms and helps inform discussions about how to make these platforms more consumer-friendly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)429-440
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the Association for Consumer Research
Volume8
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing

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