Stores are trying to woo you with THIS...

When I went to the mall recently, I couldn't help but notice one thing as I ambled past several stores: The scents wafting from each of them.

In particular, you would think Hollister and Abercrombie and Fitch sell perfume rather than clothing; my olfactory nerves kick into overdrive anytime I'm in those stores checking out shirts and jeans.

Retailers are going to great lengths to get consumers' attention. Think about all the stimuli as sailing our senses at a mall: myriad advertisements, people walking to and fro, the smell of mouth-watering pizza coming from the food court -- the list goes on.

Thus, it comes as no surprise that companies are trying unorthodox strategies for getting into our heads -- and pockets -- not the least of which is pumping pleasant smells into their stores.

It all factors into their efforts to create a welcoming atmosphere -- which may encompass everything from dim lighting to clutter-free aisles. Studies have found that consumers are twice as likely to patronize stores that provide a pleasant ambiance.

Be cognizant of this the next time you're at the mall. Look around. Does something sensory in nature appear to be there for a reason? The more conscious you are of these tactics, the less likely you are to be ensured by them -- unless, of course, you have the urge to splurge!

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