Guide for Authors

  • Author information pack


    The Journal of Consumer Psychology (JCP) publishes top-quality research articles that contribute both theoretically and empirically to our understanding of the psychology of consumer behavior. JCP is the official journal of the Society for Consumer Psychology, Division 23 of the American Psychological Association. JCP publishes articles in areas such as consumer judgment and decision processes, consumer needs, attitude formation and change, reactions to persuasive communications, consumption experiences, consumer information processing, consumer-brand relationships, affective, cognitive, and motivational determinants of consumer behavior, family and group decision processes, and cultural and individual differences in consumer behavior. Most published articles are likely to report new empirical findings, obtained either in the laboratory or in field experiments that contribute to existing theory in both consumer research and psychology. However, results of survey research, correlational studies, and other methodological paradigms are also welcomed to the extent that the findings extend our psychological understanding of consumer behavior. Theoretical and/or review articles integrating existing bodies of research and providing new insights into the underpinnings of consumer behavior and consumer decision processes are also encouraged.

    Further details regarding the journal's content, along with copies of past editorials, accepted manuscripts, and other information, can be obtained from the Society for Consumer Psychology website (


    The Journal is intended for researchers in consumer psychology, social and cognitive psychology, judgment and decision making, and related disciplines. It is also relevant to professionals in advertising and public relations, marketing and branding, consumer and market research, and public policy.


    Publishing in JCP provides many author benefits. The Journal is widely regarded as one of the top journals both in psychology and marketing. It is abstracted and indexed in many leading databases including ABI/Inform, Current Contents Search, PsycINFO, Social SciSearch, Social Sciences Citation Index, and UnCover.

    In addition, the publisher [] provides generous benefits to authors such as free PDFs, a liberal copyright policy, special discounts on Elsevier publications, and much more. Please click here for more information on our author services. []


    The Journal of Consumer Psychology accepts four types of manuscripts: (a) Research Articles (full length), (b) Research Reports (shorter), (c) Research Reviews, and (d) Research Dialogues. Manuscripts should be submitted online through the Journal's editorial site at, where authors will be guided step by step through the creation and uploading of their files. The submission file should be submitted in the native format of the word processor used. The system will automatically convert source files to a single PDF file of the article, which will be used in the peer-review process. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, will take place via e-mail generated via the submission system. If you require any further information or help, please visit our support pages:

    Style and Length

    All manuscripts submitted to JCP should be written and formatted according to the APA Style as specified by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th Edition. We strongly encourage authors to carefully review the APA manual, as it provides detailed information about the proper reporting of psychology-based research. A short tutorial on APA style can be found at:

    Submitted manuscripts should respect the following length requirements:

    • Research Reports: less than 4,000 words, excluding abstract, references, tables and figures.
    • Research Articles: 50 pages maximum (double-spaced), including abstract, references, tables and figures.
    • Research Reviews: 50 pages maximum (double-spaced), including abstract, references, tables and figures. This applies to both invited and regular-submission reviews.
    • Research Dialogues: 50 pages maximum (double-spaced), including abstract, references, tables and figures, for target articles; and 30 pages maximum (double-spaced), including abstract, references, tables and figures, for commentaries and rejoinders.

    The text should be in single-column, double-spaced format, and should not be justified or hyphenated. Do not embed graphically designed equations or tables. Instead, prepare these using the word processor's facility. Do not import tables and figures into the text; instead, indicate their approximate locations in the text. Please use the "spell-check" and "grammar-check" functions of your word processor, and have your manuscript proofread carefully before submission. Should you require professional editing, consider using Elsevier's English Language Editing service (

    Important New Section. Please read carefully.

    Scientific Standards and Expectations

    JCP is committed to publishing research with the highest standards in scholarship and scientific practices. In particular, the Journal is committed to (a) a high degree of transparency in how the research was actually conducted, (b) a high degree of reproducibility of the reported findings, and (c) a strict respect of the ethical research standards set forth by the American Psychological Association (see Standard 8:Research and Publication at and by Elsevier (

    • Conflict of Interests. All authors are requested to disclose upon submission any actual or potential conflict of interest, including any financial, personal, or other relationships with people or organizations that occurred within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. See also

    • Originality of the Work. By submitting their manuscript the authors certify (a) that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis or as an electronic preprint, see; (b) that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere; (c) that its publication is approved by all authors and the responsible authorities where the work was carried out; and (d) that, if accepted, the manuscript will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder.

    • Ethical Standards and Institutional Review Board Approval. Upon submission, authors are asked to certify that the reported research was conducted in accordance with the Ethical Standards for Research and Publication set forth by the American Psychological Association (see Chapter 1 of the APA Publication Manual, 6th Edition, and Standard 8: Research and Publication at These standards include (a) proper protection of research participants (e.g., confidentiality, informed consent, participant safety, avoidance of coercion, restricted use of deception, etc.), (b) integrity in research reporting (e.g., absence of data fabrication, no plagiarism, prompt correction of published errors), and (c) integrity in research dissemination (e.g., proper credit for publication, obligation to share data, etc.). Therefore, by certifying that their research conforms to the Ethical Standards of the American Psychological Association, the authors commit to sharing their data upon request by the review team during the review process and/or by other researchers seeking to verify or replicate the results after publication. In the online submission process, authors are further asked to specify who was primarily responsible for collecting and analyzing the various data reported in the manuscript, and when and where the data were collected. In addition, authors are asked to certify that they have obtained proper approval to conduct their research from their Institutional Review Board (IRB) or equivalent authorities at their own institution.

    • Transparency and Reproducibility. When preparing their manuscript for submission it is critical that the authors strive to make their research methodology as transparent and reproducible as possible. Examples of information that is essential for transparency and reproducibility include:

      • Detailed demographics of the samples;
      • Sampling method and method of participant recruitment;
      • Clear and detailed description of each study's procedure;
      • Clear and detailed explanation of any experimental manipulation used;
      • Clear explanation of any screening or discarding of data performed;
      • Complete description of the exact statistical models used for the analyses (e.g., any covariates, interaction terms, fixed vs. random effects, etc.);
      • Degrees of freedom for statistical tests;
      • Cell means, standard deviations, and cell size.

      A comprehensive list of the type of information that authors should provide in order to ensure that their research is as transparent and reproducible as possible is provided in the appendix of this author packet.

      To enhance the transparency and subsequent reproducibility of the reported research, submissions should include a "Methodological Details Appendix" (MDA) that provides additional details about the specific methodology used in the research: details that might be too lengthy to present in the main body of the manuscript, but (a) would help the review team fully understand how the research was actually conducted, and (b) would help future readers of the published article replicate the research precisely. Although the exact content of the MDA will vary from manuscript to manuscript (depending on the type of studies being reported), information that would typically appear in MDAs include:

      • Full phrasing of the questions and scales used for the reported findings;
      • Full text of any scenarios or vignettes used;
      • Sample images of any advertising stimuli used;
      • Screen-capture of any computer interface used;
      • Pertinent details about the procedure (e.g., instructions, filler task);
      • Additional details about the method, analyses and results as indicated in the appendix to this document.

      The MDA should be appended to the manuscript file for the duration of the review process. After publication of the manuscript, the MDA will be moved to a web appendix hosted by Elsevier and linked to the manuscript. Authors who prefer certain methodological details to appear in the body of the paper or in a regular appendix to be printed with the article can choose to do so, provided that the manuscript respects the Journal's length requirements.

    • Data Sharing and Posting. JCP's policy does not presently mandate the public (or private) posting of the data underlying the research. However, as noted above, it is understood that these data will be promptly made available upon request by the review team during the review process, or by other researchers seeking to verify or replicate the results after publication. Authors who wish to make their data publicly available are encouraged to do so by uploading their datasets as an online appendix after acceptance of the article. The datasets should be uploaded as a single Microsoft Excel file, using a separate sheet (tab) for each study. The file should be self-explanatory, with the variable names clearly labeled and consistent with the text of the manuscript and the MDA. The data file will be hosted by Elsevier and linked to the online version of the manuscript on ScienceDirect ( In addition, the authors may elect to post their datasets on third-party research dissemination sites such as Before posting their datasets, the authors should first verify the legality and appropriateness of posting their data with their own Institutional Review Board and legal counsel.

    Additional Editorial and Publisher Policies

    Submission of previously rejected manuscripts
    Manuscripts that were previously rejected by JCP will not be considered for regular review. Resubmission of such manuscripts is not acceptable, even if the manuscript has been somewhat revised. However, it is permissible to submit a completely new manuscript that may have stemmed in part from a rejected manuscript, as long as there are new studies, a new conceptualization, and a new write-up. The new manuscript will be assigned a completely new review team. The submitting authors should clearly state in the cover letter that the manuscript is related to a previous submission and provide the identification number of the previous submission.

    Invited Research Reviews
    Invited Research Review articles are quite rare and highly selective. Such articles are expected to take on "big" topics that are of interest to a wide audience of researchers in consumer behavior and psychology. Invited Research Reviews are not designed to be self-motivated and idiosyncratic.

    However, non-invited Research Reviews can also be submitted to JCP. Unsolicited reviews undergo a standard review process and should therefore be submitted through the regular procedure.

    Changes to authorship
    Requests to add or remove an author, or to rearrange the author names, must be sent to the Journal Manager from the corresponding author of the manuscript and must include: (a) the reason why the name should be added or removed, or the authors' names rearranged; and (b) written confirmation (by e-mail, fax, or letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal, or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, confirmation from the author being added or removed needs to be included. Requests that are not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded by the Journal Manager to the corresponding author, who must follow the procedure as described above. Note that:
    (1) Journal Managers will inform the Journal Editors of any such requests, and (2) publication of the accepted manuscript in an online issue is suspended until authorship has been agreed upon. In case an authorship-change request is received after the manuscript is published online, a corrigendum will be issued.

    Copyright and author rights
    Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a Journal Publishing Agreement, whose intent is to ensure the widest possible dissemination of information (for more information on this and copyright see An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a link to the online version of this agreement. Subscribers may reproduce tables of contents or prepare lists of articles including abstracts for internal circulation within their institutions. Permission of the Publisher is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please consult If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article. Elsevier has preprinted forms for use by authors in these cases: please consult

    Authors (or their employer or institution) retain certain rights. Details can be found at

    Funding disclosure and related policies
    You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated. Please see

    Elsevier has established agreements and developed policies to allow authors whose articles appear in journals published by Elsevier to comply with potential manuscript archiving requirements as specified as conditions of their grant awards. To learn more about existing agreements and policies please visit

    Open access
    This journal offers authors a choice in publishing their research:

    Open Access

    • Articles are freely available to both subscribers and the wider public with permitted reuse
    • An Open Access publication fee is payable by authors or their research funder.


    • Articles are made available to subscribers as well as developing countries and patient groups through our access programs (
    • No Open Access publication fee

    All articles published Open Access will be immediately and permanently free for everyone to read and download. Permitted reuse is defined by your choice of one of the following Creative Commons user licenses:
    Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY): lets others distribute and copy the article, to create extracts, abstracts, and other revised versions, adaptations or derivative works of or from an article (such as a translation), to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), to text or data mine the article, even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit the author(s), do not represent the author as endorsing their adaptation of the article, and do not modify the article in such a way as to damage the author's honor or reputation.
    Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA): for non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, to create extracts, abstracts and other revised versions, adaptations or derivative works of or from an article (such as a translation), to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), to text and data mine the article, as long as they credit the author(s), do not represent the author as endorsing their adaptation of the article, do not modify the article in such a way as to damage the author's honor or reputation, and license their new adaptations or creations under identical terms (CC BY-NC-SA).
    Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND): for non-commercial purposes, lets others distribute and copy the article, and to include in a collective work (such as an anthology), as long as they credit the author(s) and provided they do not alter or modify the article.

    To provide Open Access, this journal has a publication fee which needs to be met by the authors or their research funders for each article published Open Access. Your publication choice will have no effect on the peer review process or acceptance of submitted articles.

    The publication fee for this journal is $1,100, excluding taxes. Learn more about Elsevier's pricing policy: YOUR MANUSCRIPTPlease consult for this the Author information pack


    Use of the Digital Object Identifier
    The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI: When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.

    Online proof correction
    Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.

    If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.

    We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately - please upload all of your corrections within 48 hours. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication. Please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility. Note that Elsevier may proceed with the publication of your article if no response is received.

    The corresponding author will be provided with a PDF file of the article, at no cost, via email. (The PDF file is a watermarked version of the published article and includes a cover sheet with the journal cover image and a disclaimer outlining the terms and conditions of use.) For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form, which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's WebShop ( Authors requiring printed copies of multiple articles may use Elsevier WebShop's 'Create Your Own Book' service to collate multiple articles within a single cover (


    What is the Journal of Consumer Psychology (JCP) looking for in Research Reports?

    Research Reports are manuscripts that are less than 4,000 words in length excluding the abstract, title page, references, tables, and figures. Research Reports, formerly referred to as Short Articles, should contain novel and interesting empirical or theoretical research just like longer-length Research Articles. However, unlike Research Articles, for novel and interesting theoretical ideas, authors of a Research Report may provide less empirical evidence; and for novel and interesting empirical findings, they may give less theoretical support. Despite these differences from Research Articles, we will maintain high standards of rigor (in terms of literature review, conceptualization, methodology, empirical analysis, and stated insights derived from analysis). Authors should acknowledge past related research and show how their paper relates to this earlier work. Shortage of space should not result in a lack of care in the literature review. Because Research Reports are meant to be widely disseminated to spark new research, they should also be easy to read.

    Research Reports may focus on novel and interesting empirical findings (based on data from experiments, surveys, or secondary sources). Examples include manuscripts whose findings: (1) are novel and interesting by themselves, (2) refute commonly held beliefs, (3) refute prior theory, or (4) refute prior explanatory processes. Some preliminary theoretical explanation must be offered for this category, but it is not necessary for authors to rule out all possible alternative explanations. Thus, inconclusive process evidence is not a reason to reject a Research Report (unless an alternative explanation is obvious and more compelling). However, note that authors need to provide substantial evidence for their proposed empirical findings' - either through large sample sizes or multiple studies or both. Thus, authors may be asked to collect additional data for further support of the phenomenon (additional study) or for a more rigorous testing of the phenomenon (new study to replace an original study). Also, as stated earlier, even if not conclusively establishing the process, authors should speculate about the process right at the outset of the paper (not just at the end). However, the strengths of the claims about the process should be proportional to the evidence being provided (i.e., if the authors only provide preliminary evidence of the process, they need to acknowledge upfront that other accounts are possible).

    Research Reports may also focus on novel and interesting theoretical ideas. Examples include manuscripts that develop: (1) an alternate process explanation for an existing theory, (2) an alternate theory for existing findings, (3) a theory that accounts for commonly held beliefs (with data to support these beliefs), or (4) a new theory. Some preliminary empirical support (one or two studies) is required for this category.

    Authors must also consider the following when they submit a Research Report:

    •The importance of the General Discussion section:

    Since one of the primary objectives for Research Reports is to stimulate follow-up research, a manuscript that is being considered for publication needs to have a General Discussion section that provides specific and compelling implications for future follow-up research.

    The General Discussion section also serves a secondary purpose. Although Research Reports are not expected to pinpoint the specific underlying process for their findings or rule out all alternative explanations (except when this is the stated goal), they are expected to recognize limitations and alternate explanations, and to suggest possible process explanations that could be tested in follow-up research. An appropriate place to do this is in the General Discussion.

    •Novelty Criterion:

    As stated at the outset, all manuscripts submitted to JCP (whether Research Articles or Research Reports) should be novel and interesting. Thus, although Research Reports are shorter in length, they should not be a mere modification or a simple extension of previous research, which is not true novelty. Novelty implies innovativeness but does not imply that it has to be counterintuitive.

    Reviewers of Research Reports are sent these guidelines along with the manuscript and are encouraged to limit themselves to 3 or 4 major concerns.

    Please consult the Author information pack for the Appendix


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