The association of smells with good and bad experiences helps explain why they are so important for customer perceptions. We have written about this before in the context of hotels, hospitals and residential care but it is equally true of almost any setting.
Guest perceptions and satisfaction ratings are extremely important. Hotel customers can easily and instantaneously provide feedback on social media, review sites and booking portals. In hospitals and care homes the emphasis may be more on overall quality of care and well-being but patient/resident feedback is still an important part of assessments made by regulators and other stakeholders.
At its most basic level, a good smell helps create a positive experience whereas a bad smell gives a negative impression. Some hotels even use the positive impact of smells to enhance the ambience for guests.
Hotel owners understand that they need to give their guests the best possible experience. Expectations vary depending on the type of hotel, as revealed in some interesting research that shows that guests expect quiet rooms with good beds and linen whether visiting one-star or five-star hotels.
It is safe to assume that the quality of linen will impact perceptions of the bed and room. This means the look and feel of the linen but also its freshness, which is in part dictated by its smell. Freshness is a major consideration for about three quarters of all guests. Indeed, there is evidence that guests only believe something is clean and fresh if it smells clean and fresh.
The smell of the bed, linen and room therefore contributes, perhaps significantly, to overall perceptions. People will also be more likely to complain, ask to switch rooms or demand a refund if the linen in their rooms is perceived to be poor quality.
At Diversey Care, with our experience in fabric care and working with partners across the hotels, hospitals and residential care sectors, we have always understood the link between cleanliness, odors, freshness and perceptions. We work with our customers to create great guest experiences and that means ensuring the best possible fabric care.
Many of our products incorporate patented Odor Neutralizing Technology (ONT). This unique and innovative ingredient chemically deactivates the molecules that cause many common bad smells.
The latest addition to our laundry range is Clax Deosoft Easy2Iron conc, a new fabric softener that infuses laundered items with a long-lasting fresh scent and makes it easier and quicker to iron them. The ONT keeps rooms smelling clean while the linens retain fragrance after drying and extended storage. It is even reactivated by the presence of water, which is why the product is equally effective on towels and linen used in saunas, spas and gyms.
ONT removes the need to include powerful perfumes in formulations. These perfumes mask bad smells in conventional products but they can themselves be overpowering. By eliminating the sources of bad smells, ONT allows us to utilize subtler perfumes such as floral fragrances that are specially selected to make a positive contribution to the guest experience.
The link between linen fragrance, cleanliness and freshness and guest perceptions highlights the importance of fabric care to hotels, hospitals and care homes. With a few simple changes to products and processes these organizations can create enhanced experiences. For hotels, that should mean better reviews, stronger recommendations and more repeat bookings. In hospitals and long-term care homes, it should mean better overall quality of care and higher satisfaction ratings.