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Does Your Spa's Flooring Influence Purchase Decisions?

Posted: June 8, 2010

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The researchers had participants stand on either soft pile carpet or hard tile and view products that were either close to them or moderately far away. When the products were a moderate distance away, people's judgments of them were unconsciously guided by their bodily sensations. That is, if they were standing on soft carpet and viewed a product that was moderately far away, they judged that item's appearance to be comforting. However, people who examined products while standing on this same plush carpet judged items that were close by as being less comforting than they did if the products were moderately far away. "When we look at objects that are close by, the bodily sensations elicited by the flooring are more likely to be used as a comparison standard, not an interpretive frame," states Meyers-Levy.

These findings have important implications for all brick and mortar retailers and service providers. Elements of interior décor such as flooring are more than matters of function or style. They may be directly tied to how a consumer perceives products, and that can determine whether or not the consumer purchases the good. Standing on solid ground with your consumers has always been important, but this research suggests that it may be the difference between a sale and failure to close the deal.

1.Joan Meyers-Levy, Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Lan Jiang. Context Effects from Bodily Sensations: Examining Bodily Sensations Induced by Flooring and the Moderating Role of Product Viewing Distance. Journal of Consumer Research, 2010; 37 (1): 1 DOI: 10.1086/649028

From ScienceDaily.com, June 4, 2010