The duration of ownership has been shown to increase the valuation of items that people currently own as well as items they have owned in the past, a phenomenon termed the “length-of-ownership effect.” We hypothesize that the duration of exposure to an item will foster increased pre-ownership attachment to an item and increased valuations in a manner similar to duration of actual ownership. We examine this effect in two experiments, both variations of the classicmugexperiment. Toinducedifferentlevelsofexposure,wevariedtheamountoftimethatparticipantsexamined the auctioned item (i.e., coffee mugs) prior to participating in real dollar auctions. In the ﬁrst study, participants bid in onlineEnglishopenbidauctions. Inthesecondstudy,participantsbidinﬁrst-pricesealedbidauctions. Inbothcasesof duration of physical contact positively inﬂuenced valuations (i.e., bid levels).
Wolf, J. R., Arkes, H. R., &Muhanna, W. A. (2008). The power of touch: An examination of the effect of duration of physical contact on the valuation of objects. Judgment and Decision Making, 3(6), 476.