Introducing Sensory Merchandising

Sensory merchandising

This post first featured in the Modern Retail Guide to Shopfitting July 2019. To read the full ebook click here, or scroll to the end of the page to view on page-turning software.

When was the last time you were impressed by a shop’s decor or soundtrack? Was there a noticeable theme throughout the store? Perhaps there was a specific genre of music, but how often do you leave a store feeling impressed?

Successful retailers know how to create an aesthetically pleasing display and impress visually, but often, they fail to leverage more senses. Modern Retail are here to show you exactly how you can tap into sensory merchandising, and keep customers coming back for more.


It goes without saying that creating a visually pleasing atmosphere will encourage shoppers to enter a store, browse, and eventually, make a purchase. But how much does sight impact consumers’ impression of a retailer?


Scent can be used to create a memorable experience, with customers associating particular smells with retailers they have visited. This can work to enhance customers’ experiences, as well as remind them of your brand when they smell it elsewhere.


Depending on what you are selling, taster samples can effectively allow customers to try before they buy. For those who don’t sell edible products, samples can still prove successful, for example, offering visitors coffee or having sweets at the till.


Different stores choose different genres of music, making sure it aligns with their brand image. Depending on the type of store, volume can be changed to create the desired vibe, or to allow conversation to be clearly audible. Music can make all the difference when shopping and sensory merchandising, keeping customers instore for longer and creating more of a positive memory of the experience.

  • 84% say music creates a more positive shopping experience
  • 63% of customers stay longer in stores when music they like is being played
  • 1 in 3 admit to dancing or singing in a grocery store