It’s widely acknowledged that walking speed plays an influential role in shoppers’ purchasing decisions. But until now it was unclear what retailers could do to influence the pace of their customers. New research suggests there are ways to control the speed at which shoppers walk down an aisle. Depending on your product, you may want shoppers to slow down or speed up. For instance, if you’re selling food-to-go (lunchtimes), shoppers are in a hurry so you may want to speed them up. However, if it’s something that involves more thought, such as electronics, you may want to slow shoppers down. Achieving the optimum pace is important as shoppers may miss certain important products if they are moving too fast. Conversely, slow traffic may clog up the aisles resulting in declining sales. There are various ways to control shopper speed.
- The taller the shopping aisle gondolas, the faster the shopper will move between them. Tall gondolas may cause shoppers to feel claustrophobic and so they instinctively want to “get out” and so speed up. Think about how you feel when you are walking down an alleyway you instinctively walk faster.
- The wider the aisle, the slower the customer will walk down it. More space around the shopper gives the perception of having more time. Think about walking down a wide boulevard it makes you want to slow down and enjoy the environment.
- Visuals can also have an impact on shopping speed, more muted colors can often slow shoppers down. Conversely, images that cater to youth and use vibrant colors will speed shoppers up.
- Slower, more leisurely music causes shoppers to spend more time considering their purchases and enjoying the experience. It also can result in an increase in sales. Up tempo or fast-paced music can encourage quicker shopping but may lead to fewer purchases.