Daily Insights

An Artful Option

By: Alizah Asif Farooqi | May 23, 2019

Until scratch-and-sniff screens become a reality, finding the right fragrance is still an offline game. Here’s how one fragrance brand is making the most of its omnichannel options, despite the obstacle.

Physical stores are essential for fragrance brands. That said, fragrance brands tracked in Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Beauty UK outperform other categories in driving customers to store, with 94% of them including store locators. But there’s another way perfume purveyors can optimize online assets aside from simply sending shoppers to stores: offering samples. While 56% of studied skin care brands offer samples, fragrance brands lag at 39%.

Penhaligon’s is an exception and an example of how artfully combining product finding and sampling can be done. The label uses a fragrance finder tool, located in the primary navigation of its site, to suggest scents based on the user’s answers to eight questions. The user can then select two samples from the recommendations and add them directly to the cart. As an incentive, the shipping cost of the samples is reimbursed on a product bought online or in store. So far, the strategy is showing great potential to drive online sales—the fragrance quiz garners 11% of the brand’s page views and Penhaligon’s spritzed twelve spots from Challenged to Average in Gartner L2’s digital rankings.

The fragrance game doesn’t have to stay offline. If scent makers trying to find their place outside of brick-and-mortar try out Penhaligon’s way, things might just come up roses for them in the digital world.