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ST&T Research adds virtual reality to the in-store neuromarketing toolbox

By Tom van Bommel
industry news

Neuromarketing potentially has a lot to offer to the brick and mortar retail world. But although eye tracking and brain measures are certainly useful for stores and shelves, the typical scope of in-store neuromarketing studies is often a far cry from what the retailer actually wants to know.  

Due to the lack of flexibility that typically accompanies in-store research, even a simple eye tracking study comparing two variations of the same shelve would require rebuilding the store overnight. Testing even more variations would result in an even bigger logistical nightmare. And because you can’t simply test multiple variations within a single respondent, this also requires a lot of people to collect useful data. Of course, one could get around this issue by turning to the digital world – but are photos and videos truly indicative of in-store behavior?

Starting this fall, ST&T Research unites in-store realism and digital flexibility by combining Eye Tracking, EEG and Virtual Reality into a single research solution. Respondents are instantly transported to realistic environments, which can easily be manipulated by the researcher. Shelves, products and all sorts of variables can be swapped at the click of a button. This allows for studies that test many more variations, while keeping costs, time and respondents at bay.

At this week’s Shopper Brain Conference, ST&T Research demonstrated their solution with a digitally recreated Albert Heijn. Also, together with Spotta, they used VR to test the effectiveness of outdoor advertising compared to printed brochures.