IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Effects Of Ambient Scent On Consumer Behavior: A Review Of The Literature


  • OLAHUT Meda Roxana

    () (Babes Bolyai University of Cluj Napoca, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Marketing Department)

  • PLAIAS Ioan



The main purpose of this paper is to present an extended literature review of relevant empirical studies which examine the effect of ambient scent on consumers’ perception, consumers’ emotions and consumers’ behavioral responses in the context of retailing. Compared with other atmospheric stimuli (such as background music), ambient scent has received little attention from researchers. This paper is also concentrated on identifying de principal dimensions of ambient scent (presence versus absence; congruity versus incongruity and pleasantness versus unpleasantness) and examined how these dimensions of ambient scent have an impact on evaluation of a product, of a store or of a shopping mall and their impact on shopping behavior within a store. The paper also presented the Gulas and Bloch (1995) model, a complex conceptual framework on the influence of ambient scent on consumer responses, in their model the authors introduced the influence of mediating factors on behavioral responses to scent. Their model is a first step on the understanding the role of ambient scent in influencing consumer behavior. Davis, Kooijman and Ward (2003) extending and elaborating the Gulas and Bloch (1995) model by introducing concepts from cognate disciplines and examines mediating factors that help shape the emotional and behavioural responses that are stimulated to encompass current research on human olfaction and brings another specific points for future research. Based on the results of the relevant studies the authors of the present paper concludes by identifying gaps in the literature and suggest future research to explore how the use of scent help to create an overall store atmosphere which influence shopping behavior in the context of retailing.

Suggested Citation

  • OLAHUT Meda Roxana & PLAIAS Ioan, 2013. "The Effects Of Ambient Scent On Consumer Behavior: A Review Of The Literature," Annals of Faculty of Economics, University of Oradea, Faculty of Economics, vol. 1(1), pages 1797-1806, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:ora:journl:v:1:y:2013:i:1:p:1797-1806

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Spangenberg, Eric R. & Sprott, David E. & Grohmann, Bianca & Tracy, Daniel L., 2006. "Gender-congruent ambient scent influences on approach and avoidance behaviors in a retail store," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 59(12), pages 1281-1287, November.
    2. Spangenberg, Eric R. & Grohmann, Bianca & Sprott, David E., 2005. "It's beginning to smell (and sound) a lot like Christmas: the interactive effects of ambient scent and music in a retail setting," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 58(11), pages 1583-1589, November.
    3. Chebat, Jean-Charles & Michon, Richard, 2003. "Impact of ambient odors on mall shoppers' emotions, cognition, and spending: A test of competitive causal theories," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 56(7), pages 529-539, July.
    4. Michon, Richard & Chebat, Jean-Charles & Turley, L. W., 2005. "Mall atmospherics: the interaction effects of the mall environment on shopping behavior," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 58(5), pages 576-583, May.
    5. Morrison, Michael & Gan, Sarah & Dubelaar, Chris & Oppewal, Harmen, 2011. "In-store music and aroma influences on shopper behavior and satisfaction," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 64(6), pages 558-564, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    ambient scent; store atmosphere; consumer behavior; consumer perception; consumer emotion; retail stores.;

    JEL classification:

    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing
    • M39 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Other


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ora:journl:v:1:y:2013:i:1:p:1797-1806. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Catalin ZMOLE). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.