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Purchase intention of Chinese consumers toward a US apparel brand: a test of a composite behavior intention model

Byoungho Jin (Department of Consumer, Apparel and Retail Studies, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG), Greensboro, North Carolina, USA)
Ji Hye Kang (Research Institute of Clothing and Textile Science, Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea)

Journal of Consumer Marketing

ISSN: 0736-3761

Article publication date: 3 May 2011




The purpose of this article is to assist US apparel firms to successfully market in China. It aims to accurately predict Chinese consumers' purchase intentions toward a US brand. For this purpose, it proposes a composite model incorporating two behavioral intention models, Lee's model and decomposed Ajzen's model, and empirically tests the composite model.


A total of 747 consumer data were collected in three cities of China, Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou, utilizing a series of mall intercept method at two levels of shopping malls in each city.


Among the proposed direct paths to purchase intention (PI), attitude toward the US brand apparel was the most important in explaining contemporary Chinese consumers' purchase intentions, followed by external perceived behavioral control (PBC) and subjective norm (SN). Two Confucian values, face saving and group conformity, did not directly affect PI at all, and face saving only influenced PI indirectly through the increase of attitude toward US brand apparel. Among external PBC (one's controllability toward a purchase) and internal PBC (one's self‐efficacy), only external PBC led to PI.

Practical implications

By examining the two aspects of PBC, the study validated the importance of consumers' resource controllability (i.e. external PBC) in Chinese purchase behaviors in the midst of rapid socioeconomic changes. This approach advances previous studies that primarily viewed PBC as one dimension.


The paper is one of earliest endeavors to consider the decomposed PBC in a composite model. Also, the paper provides early proof that external PBC is more important than internal PBC in purchase contexts.



Jin, B. and Hye Kang, J. (2011), "Purchase intention of Chinese consumers toward a US apparel brand: a test of a composite behavior intention model", Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 28 No. 3, pp. 187-199.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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