Decision rules are said to be non compensatory when good performance on one evaluative criterion does not offset or compensate from poor performance on another evaluative criterion, of the brand. Several varieties of non compensatory rules may be used by consumer. The following summary of each type will be illustrated with data.
This approach is used when the consumer establishes minimum acceptable performance standards which each brand must meet. Any brand will be acceptable if it exceeds the minimum standard on any criterion. The decision rules will then be to select the brand that exceeds the others by the greatest amount on the criterion selected. For example, if the electronic calculator buyer with the evoked set presented in Table were to use a price of less than $12 as the criterion the disjunctive decisions rule in this case would lead to the choice of the TI 1001 because (1) it is less than $12 and (2) it is the lowest priced alternative in the acceptable group. Note that the Royal calculator would be eliminated immediately because its price is higher than $12.
The conjunctive decision rule requires the consumer to establish minimum levels of acceptability on each brand attribute. Thus, for each evaluation criterion of importance to the consumer a cutoff point will be set below which brands would not be considered further. Table shows the minimum levels of acceptability for each evaluative criterion involved in this consumer’s purchase of an electronic calculator (as determined by the consumer). Based on the conjunctive decision rule process every brand but the Canon LC – 20 would be discarded for further considerations because each has one or more unacceptable attributes levels. For example, while the KMC 3000 has an acceptable price level and is rated as easy to use. It has a less attractive warranty and does not offer as complete range of functions/features as desired by this shopper. Thus, the Canon LC-20 would be the chosen brand if this buyer followed conjunctive decision rule process.
This extension of the disjunctive decision rule allows additional evaluative criteria to be incorporated in the decision if necessary. Thus, if a choice cannot be made by evaluating the most important criterion other evaluative criteria will be assessed in their order of importance. For instance, assume that the consumer’s hierarchy of importance for the evaluative criteria presented in Table was a follows ease of use, functions/ features warranty, price readability of display and battery life. Using this decision approach all brands would be first evaluated on the most important dimension –this case ease of use. A tie exists between the KMC 3000, TI 1001 and Canon LC-20 which are all rated as very good. Discarded from any further consideration would be the Royal LC-80 (even though it ranks highest on the next most important dimension). The three remaining brands are then assessed on the evaluative criterion of functions / features and the KMC 3000 would now be dropped from further evaluation. The TI 1001 and the Canon LC – 20 are evaluated equally on the next most important dimensions so an additional criterion must be assessed. On the fourth most important attribute price, the TI 1001 as the lowest priced brand would be to chosen alternative. Of course, each consumer may have a different hierarchy of importance for these criteria which would result in other brands being selected by these shoppers.