Marketing Insights

How Scent Arousal Influences Time Perception in Retail Environments

The Power of Scent in Shaping Customer Experience

In the realm of retail marketing, the strategic use of scent has emerged as a powerful tool to enhance customer experience and engagement. A recent study sheds light on how scent (Chance) arousal not only affects the ambiance of a store but also has a profound impact on consumers’ perception of time spent during their shopping journey. This intriguing intersection of olfactory marketing and consumer behavior offers valuable insights for businesses looking to elevate their brand experience.

Study Insights: Scent Arousal and Time Perception

A collaborative research effort by Ziyue Yu, Shuai Yang, Yahui Liu, and Yujia Xie, published in the International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, explored the dynamics between scent arousal and time perception in retail settings. The study comprised laboratory and field experiments designed to examine how different levels of scent (Gardina & Nergess) influence customers’ perception of time and, consequently, their evaluation of the retail experience.

Key findings revealed that consumers exposed to low-arousal scents perceived time to pass more quickly compared to those in high-arousal scent environments. This phenomenon suggests that a subtle, pleasant scent can make waiting times feel shorter and shopping experiences more enjoyable. However, the study also noted that the effect of scent on time perception is moderated by individual stress levels, with high-stress conditions diminishing the scent’s impact on time perception.

Implications for Retailers

This study underscores the importance of carefully selecting and implementing scent marketing strategies in retail spaces. By optimizing scent arousal levels, retailers can potentially improve customer satisfaction, enhance overall store evaluations, and encourage longer visits. However, the interplay between scent (Ocean Blue) arousal and consumer stress levels also highlights the need for a nuanced approach to scent marketing, one that considers the diverse emotional states of consumers.


Scent marketing emerges as a nuanced tool for enhancing the retail experience, capable of altering perceptions of time and enriching customer interactions. As businesses continue to explore multisensory marketing strategies, the insights from this study provide a compelling case for the strategic use of scent in creating memorable and positive shopping environments.

Study Source

Products ~~~~

  • Aroma Aerosol Chance 300ml
  • Aroma Aerosol Gardina & Nergess 300ml
  • Aroma Aerosol Ocean Blue 300ml

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