High-Tech Ways Stores Get You to Buy
From "Would you like fries with that?" to showing two Alka Seltzer in ads instead of one, it's always interesting to learn the subtle ways companies try to increase their sales. A Wall Street Journal article today gathers some of the latest tech companies are using to guide their body wash bottles and store displays, including retina tracking, brain-wave monitoring and virtual reality.
Unilever had people look at deodorant and Axe body wash in a 3D virtual reality program when the company last redesigned the Axe bottle. Because everything was virtual, researchers were able to test numerous combinations of packaging and store shelving quickly and easily. They used retina tracking to see where people's gaze landed on virtual store shelves.
Among their findings was that it's better to have angled shelves that slide products to the front of the shelf. One store that it out increased its deodorant sales by 3.5 percent.
In addition to retina tracking, researchers use brainwave-measuring headgear and cameras that detect involuntary facial expressions to try to get objective data on what people think of their products. Companies have turned to these technologies because simply asking focus groups what that like doesn't work well, the Wall Street Journal reported. When asked, people in focus groups tend to overestimate how likely they are to buy something and they're often not consciously aware of what they notice in a packaging design.