A picture alongside a food item increases sales by 90 percent

Laura Smarandescu, an assistant professor of marketing, and Brian Mennecke, an associate professor of information systems, did a study at Iowa State University using a digital display featuring an image of a salad along with menu information.

“If you can’t see what an item looks like you have more uncertainty in a way. By seeing a picture of an item that looks good, that will likely influence choice,” Smarandescu said.

The study conducted found that kids who saw the salad photo were up to 90 percent more likely to order a salad for lunch. The researchers attribute the rise in salad consumption to the “influence of environmental cues and images on consumer behavior.” 

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