This Article 
 Bibliographic References 
 Add to: 
Please Touch: Object Properties that Invite Touch
Second 2012 (vol. 5 no. 2)
pp. 139-147
Roberta L. Klatzky, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh
Joann Peck, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison
Touch has received increasing interest in marketing, given research indicating that contact with products influences evaluation and the tendency to purchase. However, little is known from the marketing or psychophysical literature about visible attributes of objects that elicit touch for hedonic purposes. In these studies, participants rated the tendency of pictured objects to invite touch, or “touch-ability.” Rated touch-ability varied reliably with structural attributes of objects, and the structural influences were distinct from those on other ratings such as attractiveness and apparent expense. Although the trends varied across object sets, touch-ability generally declined as surface textures became markedly rough and shape complexity became extreme. Holding stimulus factors constant, touch-ability also varied with the specific hand movements that were anticipated. Finally, mean touch-ability ratings were correlated across participants with the “Need for Touch” scale, which measures an individual's tendency to touch products. The studies point to touch-ability as a potential factor that might be incorporated into product design.

[1] A. Krishna, "An Integrative Review of Sensory Marketing: Engaging the Senses to Affect Perception, Judgment and Behavior," J. Consumer Psychology, in Press.
[2] C.V. Jansson-Boyd, "The Role of Touch in Marketing: An Introduction to the Speciial Issue," J. Psychology and Marketing, vol. 28, pp. 219-221, 2011.
[3] S.J. Lederman and R.L. Klatzky, "Hand Movements: A Window into Haptic Object Recognition," Cognitive Psychology, vol. 19, pp. 342-368, 1987.
[4] R.L. Klatzky and S.J. Lederman, "Toward a Computational Model of Constraint-Driven Exploration and Haptic Object Identification," Perception, vol. 22, pp. 597-621, 1993.
[5] B. Grohman, E.R. Spangenberg, and D.E. Sprott, "The Influence of Tactile Input on the Evaluation of Retail Product Offerings," J. Retailing, vol. 83, no. 2, pp. 237-245, 2007.
[6] D.B. McCabe and S.M. Nowlis, "The Effect of Examining Actual Products or Product Descriptions on Consumer Preference," J. Consumer Psychology, vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 431-439, 2003.
[7] J. Peck and T.L. Childers, "To Have and to Hold: The Influence of Haptic Information on Product Judgments," J. Marketing, vol. 67, no. 2, pp. 35-48, Apr. 2003.
[8] J. Peck and J. Wiggins, "It Just Feels Good: Consumers' Affective Response to Touch and Its Influence on Persuasion," J. Marketing, vol. 70, pp. 56-69, Oct. 2006.
[9] A. Krishna and M. Morrin, "Does Touch Affect Taste? The Perceptual Transfer of Product Container Haptic Cues," J. Consumer Research, vol. 34, no. 6, pp. 807-18, 2008.
[10] C. Spence and A. Gallace, "Multisensory Design: Reaching Out to Touch the Consumer," Psychology and Marketing, vol. 28, pp. 267-308, 2011.
[11] J. Peck and S. Shu, "The Effect of Mere Touch on Perceived Ownership," J. Consumer Research, vol. 36, pp. 434-447, Oct. 2009.
[12] J. Peck and T.L. Childers, "If I Touch It I have to Have It: Individual and Environmental Influences on Impulse Purchasing," J. Business Research, vol. 59, pp. 765-769, 2006.
[13] L.S. Löken, J. Wessberg, I. Morrison, F. McGlone, and H. Olausson, "Coding of Pleasant Touch by Unmyelinated Afferents in Humans," Nature Neuroscience, vol. 12, pp. 547-548, 2009.
[14] G. Ekman, J. Hosman, and B. Lindstrong, "Roughness, Smoothness, and Preference: A Study of Quantitatie Relations in Individual Subjects," J. Experimental Psychology, vol. 70, pp. 18-26, 1965.
[15] H.R. Moskowitz, "Sensory Intensity vs Hedonic Functions: Classical Psychophysical Approaches," J. Food Quality, vol. 5, pp. 109-138, 1981.
[16] G.K. Essick, F. McGlone, C. Dancer, D. Fabricant, Y. Ragin, N. Phillips, T. Jones, and S. Guest, "Quantitative Assessment of Pleasant Touch," Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Rev., vol. 34, pp. 192-203, 2010.
[17] R.L. Klatzky, S.J. Lederman, and D.E. Matula, "Haptic Exploration in the Presence of Vision," J. Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, vol. 19, no. 4, pp. 726-743, 1993.
[18] J. Peck and T.L. Childers, "Individual Differences in Haptic Infor mation Processing: On the Development, Validation, and Use of the 'Need for Touch' Scale," J. Consumer Research, vol. 30, no. 3, pp. 430-442, 2003b.
[19] J.E. Workman, "Fashion Consumer Groups, Gender, and Need for Touch," Clothing and Textiles Research J., vol. 28, no. 2, pp. 126-139, 2010.
[20] S-AA. Jim, "The Impact of 3D Virtual Haptics in Marketing," Psychology and Marketing, vol. 28, no. 3, pp. 240-255, 2011.
[21] T. Cooke, S. Kannengiesser, C. Wallraven, and H.H. Bulthoff, "Feature Validation Using Visual and Haptic Similarity Ratings," ACM Trans. Applied Perception, vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 239-261, 2006.
[22], 2012.
[23] R.L. Klatzky, "Touch: A Gentle Tutorial with Implications for Marketing," Sensory Marketing Research on the Sensuality of Products, Aradhna Krishna, ed., pp. 33-48, Routledge, 2010.

Index Terms:
Cognition, perception and psychophysics, psychology, touch-based properties and capabilities of the human user.
Roberta L. Klatzky, Joann Peck, "Please Touch: Object Properties that Invite Touch," IEEE Transactions on Haptics, vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 139-147, Second 2012, doi:10.1109/TOH.2011.54
Usage of this product signifies your acceptance of the Terms of Use.