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Perceptive businesses make the most of opportunities to improve staff well-being and customer experience. But there’s one key invisible business asset that’s waiting to be harnessed by many: and that’s air.
Fragrant, odour-free washrooms deliver a hygienic experience that improves business sentiment. Purified air works wonders with staff’s mental and physical well-being, while scented air in strategic areas positively impacts customers’ perception, behaviour and loyalty, helping to drive revenues.
Essentially, we all like being somewhere that smells nice, clean and familiar, and that makes a positive difference to our mood and behaviour. Understanding the impact of air quality on our emotions, behaviours and experiences can help to unlock the benefits of improved air across a business.
Smell is the most powerful sense we have. In the most simplest of terms, when we smell something, an impulse passes to our brain along the olfactory nerve, arriving at the olfactory bulb, which then passes information to the limbic system. The limbic system is recognised as a major player in controlling our moods, emotions and behaviours.
Our brains are wired to associate bad odours with unhygienic things, so unpleasant smells make us believe we’re somewhere we don’t want to be. Additionally, our senses don’t work in isolation, they all work in collaboration with each other and the more senses that are involved, the more a reaction will be amplified. This is something known as ‘the multiplier effect’, so a bad smell combined with something as simple as a bin overflowing with paper towels will create a bigger emotional response in a washroom user than the bin alone.
With that in mind, smell is one of the first things people notice when they visit your washroom and your business will benefit if customers have a good experience. Our research shows that 68% of people said a pleasant-smelling toilet would reassure them that it was clean, which translates into a positive reflection of a business brand. On the flip side, 88% of people want to leave a washroom as quickly as possible if there is a bad smell, with around a third saying they would miss something like washing or drying hands to leave faster. Even worse, 46% of people would not return to a place with an unpleasant-smelling washroom.
Good air care solutions can remove malodour, effectively cleaning the air by neutralising bacteria that causes bad smells. By reassuring your users that your washroom is being looked after, you can create the right lasting impression with customers, providing a positive overall brand experience. A clean and pleasant-smelling washroom can also improve staff morale and well-being, with employees less likely to be embarrassed when visitors need to use the facilities.
Air quality is particularly important to non-transient areas such as offices or classrooms and, in the case of hotels, conference rooms. When staff or guests remain in one place for any length of time, they can be affected by poor air quality. The American Medical Association says 50% of all illnesses are caused or aggravated by polluted air.
Nowadays, a lot more is known about how to improve air purification by carefully filtering harmful airborne particles and eliminating microorganisms. Sick Building Syndrome (SBS), for instance, is blamed for causing headache, eye, nose and throat complaints, lethargy and mental fatigue. It affects 20% of us and the symptoms disappear when we leave the building.
Improving air quality will support good health and well-being, reducing contributing factors linked to respiratory disease, allergies and asthma symptoms, and SBS.
Air purification can improve concentration and cognitive function, reducing symptoms of SBS by 20%–50%. According to a professor of construction engineering at the University of Reading, a better office environment will improve productivity by between 4% and 10%. Better air care not only boosts productivity; it can also reduce absenteeism, which costs UK businesses alone £12 billion each year.
In schools, air purification can bring significant improvement for children who may be particularly at risk from respiratory illnesses and allergens that can cause asthma. It also improves their concentration and cuts down on absenteeism.
While better air quality brings undoubted health benefits, using the positive power of fragrance can also benefit customers and businesses. Our moods and behaviours are intrinsically linked to our sense of smell and evocative scenting can make a real difference in many ways and to a range of business sectors.
Experiential scenting helps businesses to emotionally engage with customers, enhance their experience and create a deep, emotional connection that strengthens brand loyalty. This helps foster long-term and profitable customer relationships. For example, hotel chains or retail outlets might use the same fragrance at their locations globally to create immersive, memorable experiences linked to their brand so that customers associate positive emotions with the familiar smell.
For shoppers, scenting can create a multi-sensory experience where customers take part in enriched interactions with products and brands. A brand-resonant scent can encourage shoppers to spend up to 20% more time in-store, which improves brand perception and builds customer loyalty. Having loyal customers who enjoy the shopping experience means they’re likely to come back time and again.
Scenting is such a powerful emotional trigger that it’s found that in sectors such as elderly care, it can help residents with better recall, boost appetite at mealtimes and help them relax. It also encourages visitors and helps staff well-being.
Solutions to air quality and fragrancing can be applied successfully to any business, large or small. By working with the right provider using the latest products and and exceptional support, you could take control of the air across your business and find out why better air isn’t only better for your business. It’s better for your customers, visitors and staff, too.
Initial provides a range of highly effective and affordable air purification to help protect your indoor environment.