Scent marketing is an emerging trend in the retail sector that is gaining ground. The reason is that customer experience is central within retail, and scents have an extraordinarily powerful influence on this experience. In fact, it has been scientifically proven that a fresh and pleasant fragrance makes customers stay in the store longer.
Why do scents exert such a strong influence on the customer experience, as opposed to music or visual elements?
Scents have a direct and powerful influence on our emotions, distinguishing them from other sensory stimuli such as music or visual elements. Odors cannot be ignored; we have no control over “not smelling” them.
Since scents influence our emotions, they also affect our buying behavior and overall customer experience. This explains why scent marketing is gaining such momentum in the retail sector, including in Belgium.
If you want to discover more about the fascinating world of scent marketing, read on.
Scents influence shopping behavior
A store that consciously uses all five of our senses creates a complete shopping experience. Indeed, our senses have a direct impact on our emotions, and these emotions enhance the shopping experience and drive purchase intent. Therefore, the main goal of scent marketing is to direct our emotions in the store, particularly through the sense of smell.
“There is no filter between our nose and our brain, therefore you cannot decide not to smell something.”
– Patrick Castelain, business manager and founder Scents, the first fragrance marketing company in Belgium
Fragrance marketing is a form of marketing in which fragrances are subtly used at points of sale. The overarching goal of scent marketing is to enhance brand perception, brand perception and product perception. Scent diffusion makes us feel pleasant, positive and relaxed while shopping, and smelling scents can significantly improve our mood.
Although the principle of scent marketing is not new, Kotler introduced the concept of atmosphere as early as 1973. This involves the effort to create emotional effects that increase the likelihood of purchases in the shopping environment. Environmental factors have thus become important links to which scent marketing in Belgium properly responds.
Our shopping and buying habits are constantly evolving. Where shopping used to be a functional activity, it has now become a form of entertainment. The right shopping atmosphere is one of the most important environmental factors playing a major role in the retail industry today.
The importance of choosing the right fragrance
It’s all about experiencing a pleasant smell. A unique scent that enhances the experience of the product or brand. Many store owners agree that scent experience adds powerful value. So it goes beyond fancy decor and pleasant music.
Choosing the right fragrance is very important. It’s about finding the scent that best fits your brand identity and target audience. Moreover, the right fragrance choices depend on factors such as the concept, interior design, target audience, and so on. So it is more than just choosing a scent that you like yourself.
Each fragrance has its unique character. Orange, for example, can induce cheerfulness, while lavender has a calming effect. Therefore, finding the right fragrance is not an easy task, especially when fragrance compositions use multiple ingredients.
Fragrance consultants are ready to support you in this challenging task. They offer guidelines and help you assess which fragrance is most appropriate for your store. Combine this advice along with your personal preference to find an appropriate fragrance.
De psychologische invloed van geuren
Each fragrance ingredient evokes a different reaction from customers. For example, the smell of chocolate encourages consumers to buy more. Scents have a significant impact on our behavior. Research by Professor Henk Aarts, scent psychologist at Utrecht University, has shown that a lemon scent encourages people to clean, while aggressive scents elicit associations with dirtiness or can even cause anger
A visit to the market is a perfect example of how to experience scent marketing. You may not notice the smell of a waffle stand right away, but as soon as you smell it, your appetite begins to grow. The desire for a waffle is aroused by the smell of fresh waffles.
This includes the smell of freshly brewed coffee or freshly baked bread. It excites you to buy a pastry faster.
The impact of Fragrance Marketing Belgium on buying behavior
Scent marketing in Belgium is one of the most powerful triggers driving people to make purchases. It leaves a positive impression on people. We discuss some of the benefits of scent marketing.
Increase perception of product value
Creating a pleasant fragrance in a store has a positive effect on customers’ buying behavior. Research has shown that using scents in a store increases the perception of product value.
When customers experience a pleasant smell while shopping, they feel more relaxed and positive. This directly affects their perception of the products they view. For example, they associate scent with quality, luxury and attractiveness, so they place a higher value on the products in the scented shopping environment.
In addition, a pleasant fragrance can enhance the shopping experience and keep customers in the store longer. This gives them more time to look around, explore and eventually make a purchase. Therefore, using fragrances in retail is an effective strategy to boost sales and improve the overall shopping experience.
Smell determines state of mind
The sense of smell is connected to the limbic system, the part of our brain responsible for feelings, memories, desires and motivation. Scents have the power to elicit positive and emotional responses. This can have a positive effect on feelings of irritation, stress, depression and apathy, while at the same time it can enhance positive emotions such as happiness, sensuality, relaxation and stimulation. This is supported by research by Stephen Warrenburg and Gary E. Schwartz.
Higher customer satisfaction
By infusing a space with a pleasant fragrance and focusing on the scent experience, customers experience more comfort, which automatically leads to longer stays. This leads to higher customer satisfaction, and satisfied customers are more likely to return to the store.
Scent encourages spontaneous purchase decisions
Scent marketing uses customer seduction in a subtle way. Supermarkets, for example, use the smell of fresh bread to increase cravings for pastries.
Fragrance marketing Belgium increases your sales
Several studies have shown that scent marketing can increase sales by 5 to 10%. By strategically using scents in the retail environment, retailers can positively influence customer buying behavior.
Proper scent selection (and diffusion) can enhance the customer experience and create an attractive atmosphere. A pleasant fragrance can positively influence customers’ emotions, keep them in the store longer and increase their purchase intention. This ultimately results in increased sales for retailers.
The success of scent marketing in Belgium is based on the powerful influence scents have on our emotions and behavior. Creating a pleasant scent experience is recognized as an effective strategy to attract, engage and encourage customers to make purchasing decisions. This is why more and more retailers are investing in scent marketing as a valuable tool to improve their sales results.
Fragrance marketing opens doors in Belgian retail sector
Scent marketing offers numerous opportunities in the retail sector. Subconsciously, customers come into contact with scents that evoke positive emotions. By creating the right atmosphere, the customer experience and brand perception can be enhanced, ultimately leading to an increase in sales.
Are you also curious about the impact of a fragrance machine in your store?