SSRS contacted smokers in multiple countries to help Cornell University to understand the choices smokers make when confronted with various smoking and nicotine options, explore how messaging about each item, product price, and product flavor affects the decisions smokers make (including the possibility of quitting), and examine how different policies/messaging in a given country may affect what product is selected, if any.


SSRS needed a way to efficiently collect enough data to understand choice behavior when there were 108 different e-cigarette options the client wanted to explore. Using a design and analytic technique known as a Discrete Choice Experiment (DCE) enables the possibility of collecting a robust dataset reflecting a multitude of choice scenarios without excessive respondent burden.


SSRS was able to achieve the goals for this study by sampling and recruiting potential respondents largely from the SSRS Opinion Panel, SSRS’s unique probability-based online panel in the US, supplemented with recruits from opt-in online panels in other countries. The respondents were screened to determine if they were smokers, who were then invited to participate in the survey. Additionally, to provide a robust approach to understanding choice behavior, SSRS designed and implemented a Discrete Choice Experiment (DCE), where respondents were presented with various cigarette and e-cigarette options and then were asked to choose between products or potentially to choose none/quit smoking.


SSRS interviewed more than 4,800 smokers in 7 countries to understand choice behavior when presented with different price, flavors, and warning labels.

The data from this study will shed light on what items may trigger someone to switch from a product they currently use to another project (such as switching from cigarettes to e-cigarettes) and what might prompt a user to consider quitting.