Using Scents To Trigger Consumers

A crucial element to success in any retail environment is to deliver a positive in-store experience to their customers. While offering good customer service is an important part of customer perception, an often overlooked part of the customer experience is the overall environment of the store, which includes lighting, music, and an important aspect that can directly influence the customer – scent.

Of all of our five senses, the one which most dominates is our sense of smell.

Our sense of smell is the only sense that has a direct line to the limbic system in our brain, the area that is connected to our emotions and memory. It is this system which is directly tied to a positive consumer experience, and one which retailers are tapping into by providing the right scent strategy to trigger consumers to reinforce brand identity and/or ensure a positive store experience.

Numerous recent studies have provided the hard statistics to back up the science of consumers’ perception of scents and their effect on the shopping experience:

  • A Nike study demonstrated that scent affected the desirability of shoes in 84 percent of subjects, with the subjects indicating a willingness to pay 10 to 20 percent more in scented environments.
  • A casino study showed a 45 percent increase in revenue increase for slot machines located in scented areas, while those slot machines in unscented areas experienced a 40 percent decrease in dwelling time.
  • A study of Samsung customers revealed that shoppers underestimated their actual shopping time by approximately 26 percent as well as visiting three times the number of product categories while exposed to scent marketing.

Clearly, scent translates into dollars when it comes to consumers and the overall shopping experience. The trick is to finding the right scent and tapping into it in such a way as to translate into an experience that will encourage the customer to browse and shop longer.

For more information on how you can transform your customers’ shopping experience and build your brand, contact AIR-SCENT® International, a world leader in Scent Solutions.


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