Merchandising/Marketing/Retailing: Branding

Is Honesty the Best Policy? Examining the Role of Price and Supply Chain Transparency in Fashion Marketing

  • Lori Rothenberg (North Carolina State University)
  • Naeun Lauren Kim (University of Minnesota)


Transparency is one of the most prominent demands of consumers today. Fashion brands such as Patagonia, Everlane, and Arket are responding to this demand for transparency by sharing information on the cost-breakdown of products and manufacturing processes. Research shows that for proactive companies, transparency can become a vital tool for product, process, and business model innovation. Nonetheless, little is known about the role of transparency and how it affects consumers’ purchase intentions and perceptions of a brand in the fashion context. The purpose of this study is to investigate how consumers react to fashion brands that provide price or supply chain transparency. An experiment with a total of three scenarios using a fictitious fashion brand was developed, and data were collected from 121 American consumers through MTurk. The findings suggest that both price transparency and supply chain transparency positively affect the overall brand equity and consumers’ purchase intentions, while the moderation effect of socially conscious purchasing behavior was not found. This study extends our current understanding on the role of transparency in fashion marketing and also suggests that brand transparency may be another key dimension of brand equity.

Keywords: supply chain

How to Cite:

Rothenberg, L. & Kim, N. L., (2019) “Is Honesty the Best Policy? Examining the Role of Price and Supply Chain Transparency in Fashion Marketing”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 76(1). doi:

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Published on
15 Dec 2019