Nudging is an area of behavioral science where businesses or companies use discreet tactics to nudge people towards a desired outcome.
It's a very interesting area to look at combining consumer behavior, marketing methods, psychology and business.
I have come across it a few times in the past while studying retail and retail practices.
Some retailers use a variety of tricks to induce the required behavior from their customers.
Some place modified mirrors in their dressing rooms so that you appear thinner when trying on outfits. They do always look better in the shop.
Some introduce carpets or gradients near their expensive products to slow down your trolley slightly so that you look around and find items tp purchase.
An area that I found very fascinating in regards to nudging customers is scent marketing. It is the science of introducing certain scents to trigger certain behaviors.
When I was in college previously we had a marketing team come on from a company that specializes in scenting stores. It was a very interesting lecture and one that stayed with me.
Our sense of smell triggers the most powerful sensory recall. 75% of people are impulsively drawn into a store by a smell and 90% of customers change their pace based on a smell. Either speeding up or down depending on the scent.
Scent's can be used to trigger behaviors subconsciously such as a bakery that pumps the smell of freshly baked products into the street to attract customers.
You can buy scents in a bottle for commercial use and there are large DIY stores that pump the smell of fresh cut grass through their air vents to encourage people to think of working outdoors and buy gardening stock.
At xmas shopping centers use the smell of cinnamon and spices to make people think of the holidays and get into the spending mood. Some scents trigger certain responses and there are companies highly invested into this area researching what scents trigger what responses.
Some businesses go as far as to create their own signature scent such as holiday inns so that customers can use any one on the world and have the same experience, putting them at ease while they travel.
The list goes on but overall it is another tactic to nudge people in a certain direction by following their nose. You might not even realize that it has been happening to yourself on a constant basis until now.
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