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Assessing the Validity of Conjoint Analysis--Continued (1997)

Despite over 20 years of conjoint research and hundreds of methodological papers, very little has been published in the way of formal tests of whether conjoint really works in predicting real-world purchase decisions. The authors (Orme, Alpert and Christensen) argue that the holdouts typically used in conjoint validation studies are not very realistic, especially for high-involvement categories. The authors present results from a small pilot study. Respondents completed ACA, full-profile card sort, regular holdout choices and a "Super Holdout Task." The Super Holdout Task took 10 minutes and was an attempt to create a more realistic holdout. The authors compare results from the two types of holdout tasks and detect no significant differences. The authors find no significant difference in holdout hit rates for the Super Holdout Task for ACA and full-profile, though full-profile maintains a small edge. Full profile and CBC importances are shown to be steeper than ACA importances. The authors call for more realistic holdout tasks and urge those who have the resources to publish real-world validations of conjoint analysis. Originally presented at the 1997 Sawtooth Software Conference.

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