When Keeping It Simple Isn't Stupid: the Cost of Olfactory Complexity

Scents are widely used across retail-environments to make consumers linger longer. These positive effects of scent are generally attributed to mood-enhancement. Across four studies, we investigate the under-researched dimension of scent complexity and show that complex scents (vs. simple) impair cognitive task performance. The effect is moderated by perceived familiarity.


Shilpa Madan and Elison Lim (2015) ,"When Keeping It Simple Isn't Stupid: the Cost of Olfactory Complexity", in AP - Asia-Pacific Advances in Consumer Research Volume 11, eds. Echo Wen Wan, Meng Zhang, and , Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 194-192.


Shilpa Madan, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Elison Lim, Nanyang Technological University, Institute on Asian Consumer Insight, Singapore


AP - Asia-Pacific Advances in Consumer Research Volume 11 | 2015

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