In-store music and aroma influences on shopper behavior and satisfaction
Retail markets are increasingly competitive and retailers continuously look to differentiate their retail offering. One way to differentiate is by providing a pleasant and exciting shopping ambience. This paper experimentally tests the effects of music (volume high or low) and aroma (vanilla scent present/absent) on young fashion shoppers in a real retail setting. Results show that volume of music and the presence of a vanilla aroma both have a significant impact on shoppers' emotions and satisfaction levels. Additional analysis reveals that the arousal induced by music and aroma results in increased pleasure levels, which in turn positively influences shopper behaviors, including time and money spend, approach behavior, and satisfaction with the shopping experience. Direct effects of arousal on behaviors as well as an interaction effect between music and aroma on pleasure and time spent in the store are also present. The paper contributes to the better understanding of shoppers' emotions and shopper behaviors in response to in-store atmospherics and offers retailers practical insights into how to create competitive advantage by customizing the atmosphere in their stores.
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