How do middle aisles influence shopping behavior? Page and colleagues set out to “establish the effectiveness of a supermarket layout with a middle aisle splitting all other aisles, compared to a ‘traditional’ layout (without a middle aisle). . . . The research aims to . . . explore the shopper traffic entering and existing the middle aisle, and interaction with endcap promotions . . . and . . . compare the two stores based on basket size (in items and dollars) and trip duration. . . .
Hadi and Block investigated the effects of comfortable and uncomfortable temperatures on decision making. They determined that “the adoption of an affective [emotional] decision-making style makes individuals feel warmer . . . and more comfortable in response to uncomfortably cold temperature. . . . individuals spontaneously rely more or less on affect when feeling uncomfortably cold or warm, respectively . . . which ultimately influences consequential downstream variables (e.g., willingness to pay). . . . This effect holds in response to both tactile [skin contact] . . .
Dong, Huang, Labroo link sounds heard and choices made. The research team found that “Managers often use music as a marketing tool. . . . in service settings, slow music to boost relaxation, and classical music for sophistication. . . . Employing field, laboratory, and online studies, the authors find that listening to higher-pitched music increases consumers’ likelihood to choose healthy options [vs. lower-pitched music] . . . order lower-calorie foods . . . and engage in health-boosting activities. . . . This effect arises because high pitch raises salience of morality thoughts . . .
Imschloss and Kuehnl’s findings, consistent with previous research, indicate how important consistency in sensory experiences can be. They determined that “In retail environments, consumers commonly evaluate products while standing on some type of flooring and concurrently being exposed to music. . . . The results of an experiment in a real retail store reveal positive effects of multisensory congruent retail environments (e.g., soft music combined with soft flooring) on product evaluations. . . . .
Dennis and colleagues investigated links between gender and shopping style and their findings have implications for retail design when it is more likely that a particular gender will shop at a particular website/location/etc. The team determined that their “survey of shopping behavior across 11 countries indicate though that men and women are evolutionarily predisposed to different shopping styles. . . . Our results show that men’s and women’s shopping styles reflect their respective, evolutionarily determined, and societal roles as hunters and gatherers. . . .
Helm and colleagues’ research indicates that consumers still value the experience of visiting physical stores. The team found via “a content analysis of reader comments [US consumers] in response to articles featuring reports on large-scale store closures, and structured online consumer interviews. . . . many consumers lamenting the disappearance of physical retailers. Most expect negative consequences for themselves and society.
Kwon and Kim investigated how soundscapes influenced attention to various design elements in coffee shops. Data collected via eye-tracking and interviews were analyzed as part of their study, which “explored how visual attention to the interior elements of commercial settings was affected by auditory stimuli. . . . photo images of coffee shops were used as visual stimuli. . . . As auditory stimuli, two songs in different genres were used: soft pop . . . and dance-pop. . . .
Cognitive scientists have thoroughly researched how the design of reach-out-and-touch-the-merchan
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