Influencing consumer behaviour through interior design

Creating the right environment for consumers is crucial. It impacts their emotions, behaviour and even how they physically feel. The design of a property shapes the psychological experience consumers have when entering that space. Factors such as colour, layout, furniture and lighting all contribute to the aesthetic and how that appeals to the person occupying the area.

The environmental interaction is also influenced by larger-scale factors such as the acoustics in a space or the layout of the room. Even the proportions adopted in an area can affect the way a consumer feels.

Photo: Scene

Colour psychology and branding

The impact of colour in interior design has long been recognised by designers. They speak their own language without the need for explanation. Companies have adopted set colours in their logos and branding to shape the way they are perceived by consumers and evoke certain feelings. First impressions are key and many initial subconscious assessments of a brand are based purely on the colour chosen.

The effects of colour vary – while some give off warmth and energy, others symbolise calmness and relaxation. Multiple companies have manipulated these psychological connections to create subconscious feelings towards the brands or commercial environment. Many food chains use the colour red in their branding as it is associated with quick and tasty food. Additionally, the colour red is believed to increase the heart rate, prompting digestion and ultimately making people feel hungry! It is for this reason you see the colour used in so much commercial food advertising. Greens and yellows are seen as more energising, healthy and natural colours which lead to medical and wellness companies using these colours in their branding and retail spaces


Layout and flow

Considering the functionality of the space is imperative. The consumer experience begins when they first see the environment. As they enter the space and start to move through the area, the design will guide how they interact with it. Being accessible, fluid and open, allows for the customer to feel connected and comfortable, with room to move around. Creating individual zones or sectioning off areas enables particular products or services to be highlighted. Providing a welcoming and inclusive layout reaches out to more people and provides a space they want to stay in.

Thinking about the presentation of the physical space, at the start, can help create a canvas on what to set the rest of the design on. Flooring, walls and ceiling all have the ability to set the tone and create a chosen ambiance. Flooding the space with natural light, and bright colours can give off the impression of a much larger area. It can also be seen as positive and productive. Having coloured ceilings can either make the room feel smaller and cosier by bringing the ceiling down by using a darker colour or elongating the room, by making the ceiling feel further away if painted in a lighter colour than the walls.

Photo: Scene

Finishing Touches

Artwork, decorative items and textures all add character and personality to a place. These design choices can speak to consumers, often resonating with them on a deeper level. Items that evoke certain emotions may be used when trying to build bonds with customers or generate trust in the brand. To enrich a consumer’s experience further, many commercial properties embed plants or foliage throughout in their space. It is a great way to showcase a positive link with nature and well-being as well as improve the air quality in the room.

It is always important to remember that individual responses to interior design will vary. Colours have different meanings and associations across the world and cultural influences and surrounding environments will greatly impact the psychological responses of individuals. Taking time to personalise a space for a particular audience is essential to make the most of the subconscious impact it has.

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