Eye-tracking analysis of leafy vegetables

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Ildikó Fruzsina Boros László Sipos Attila Gere


There is a great supply of leafy vegetables on the market; hence capturing consumer’s attention (and decision) is critically important. Several scientific publications deal with consumer choices and the newest technology to capture consumer attention is eye-tracking. Eye-trackers are commonly used in Western Europe and Asia also, where it is an important and widely-used tool during product developments and the creation of marketing strategies. In Hungary, there are only a few publications about eye-tracking applications in vegetable growing and food industry. In our research, photographs about sorrel, lamb lettuce, spinach, leaf lettuce and dandelion leafs were analysed by eye-tracking technology and the eye movements of the participants during their decision making process of leafy vegetables were captured and evaluated. The eye-tracking analyses were carried out in the Sensory Laboratory of the Faculty of Food Sciences of Szent István University, using a Tobii X2-60 eye-tracker and Tobii Studio (version 3.0.5, Tobii Technology AB, Sweden) software. We aimed to answer the following research questions: Are there any connections between the eye movements of participants and their decisions? What amount of visual attention can be registered during the decision making process? Furthermore, the following metrics were measured and evaluated: fixation durations on the leafy vegetables, number of returns to products, pathways of visual attention, time until the final decision making and motivation of their final decisions. Measurement of the subconscious consumer decision making processes is way easier using eye-trackers compared to the traditional questionnaire-based methods, because it is hard or impossible to control our eye movements. Eye-tracking can be used successfully for understanding the expectations and decisions of the consumers.

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