Tapping Into Shoppers Sensory Experiences

Tapping Into Shoppers Sensory Experiences

Today’s consumers require more than visual queues alone to influence their purchasing decisions.  Retailers are resorting to more expansive, sensorial approaches in their stores in order to drive sales.  In a world where brand-to-consumer relationships are imperative, every store visit must leave an impression, and retailers are accomplishing this by engaging their customers’ five senses.

Touch: From fabrics of clothing to textures of floors, touch has an impact on consumer behavior, because customers want to feel products before they purchase them.  If a shopper can touch and hold an item that they’re considering buying, they’re more likely to become attached to it.  In fact, the journal of Judgment and Decision Making released a study stating that the longer a purchaser holds a product, the more valuable it becomes to them.

Sound: There’s no denying that music affects mood, so selecting the perfect sound for a retail space is paramount. A survey conducted by the University of Texas found that 76 percent of store managers reported increased sales with the accompaniment of background music, while 82 percent saw an ascent in shoppers’ moods. Of course, the sound of every store is different depending on the brand and their target audiences.  Whether it’s pop, rock or classical, the sound of a store must reflect its audience’s taste.

Smell: The most memory-triggering sense, smell, plays a huge part in purchasing decisions.  A recent trend among retailers is developing a signature scent in order to establish a firmer brand persona.  While clothing and beauty retailers have been utilizing this tactic for years, signature scents are spreading to all facets of retail.  Verizon Wireless recently trademarked a “flowery musk” scent for its stores to leave visitors with a longer lasting impression.

Sight: The arrangement of your products might bring a different effect than you realized. Consumer systematically associate packed store with savings and value, while stores with little merchandise displayed are perceived as more expensive. The placement of products throughout a store also influences visual perception.  Grouping items that are commonly purchased together can serve as a reminder for customers and queue additional sales.

Taste: Selecting a taste to compliment your products can also influence customers to spend more.  British Food Journal states that someone who’s had a free sample is likely to spend more, and not just for food brands.  Research has also found that warm beverages positively influence mood and perception.

Shopping isn’t as straightforward as it used to be, which is why the combination of all five senses is key in providing consumers with a fully immersive experience.  Implementing these tactics can increase revenue while simultaneously establishing a stronger brand identity.


Are You Tapping Into Shoppers’ Five Sense?” by Andreas Liffgarden


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