Coffee, more specifically caffeine, impacts how much you spend when shopping.
A new study published in the Journal of Marketing has carried out a series of experiments in retail stores that were offering coffee near the entrances. It was found that shoppers who drank a cup of complimentary coffee before roaming the stores spent about 50% more money and bought 30% more items than those who did not drink it or had some decaffeinated drink.
Why does this happen?
The answer is that caffeine is a stimulant. It releases dopamine which excites both the mind and the body. As a consequence, a decrease in self-control occurs and impulsivity is enhanced.
A further interesting element that the researchers discovered is that caffeine also impacts the types of items bought. In fact, those who drank caffeinated coffee bought more non-essential items than the other shoppers, such as scented candles and fragrances.
So, those brands with a more hedonistic product offering could consider gifting their customers a free coffee occasionally. Not only the clear benefits of caffeine will be acting in your favor but also the surprise gift of coffee will enhance the need to reciprocate. Sitting down with the coffee in your in-store cafe will also increase dwell time and, if your store is cleverly merchandised, can increase product discovery.