Studies have shown links between the music played in a store and the behavior of customers. This is a big part of a retailer’s business plan. From choosing the right colors for the store, keeping the temperature just right all the way to selecting a stellar playlist, getting consumers to spend is part of a meticulous plan of action. There are still stores that leave the choice of music to the employees, but some have professional DJs who curate playlists weekly. Playlists are put together to match trends, peak times and to adapt to consumer behaviors.
One DJ Lewitinn is hired to curate playlists for female fashion boutique Aritiza, which has 80 stores. She curates playlists weekly, and he has shared that he even considers the store’s location when adding songs. Lewitinn says he chooses the music according to the mood he’s trying to inspire in the female customers. Music that makes them feel sexy and makes them ready to go out is atop his list. Using music to make prospective buyers feel good is likely to make them buy that short dress they associate with a good time. DJ Lewitinn has been employed by Aritiza for 5 years, showing that her insight is reliable and consistent with consumer behavior.
Retailers are aware that music encourages more generous spending beyond just the decision to buy an item. Author Richard Jankovic stated that he saw a significant decline in sales at Sunglasses Hut after their sound system broke. Music can heavily alter the shopping experience, especially in this hostile market where online shopping is taking over. A 1996 study further showed that loud music encouraged customers to leave the store quickly while soft music made them wander around for longer. For this reason, supermarkets tend to play more upbeat music to encourage shoppers to move and keep queues short at peak times.
In contrast, jewelry stores always play slow music at a low volume to encourage a more wandering approach to shopping. Consumers don’t buy jewelry or furniture impulsively, so playing music that makes them rush will drive down sales as they’ll be in and out. That’s why you’ll always find Jazz tunes or something soothing in the background as you walk in. You may see this as a classy move to create a wealthy ambiance, but it’s a creative marketing tool. Backed by science as well as behavioral psychology, so you cannot deny the influence music has on consumer decisions.
Many stores don’t go this far in their business model, so they can’t provide data in this regard. They play music for ambiance or entertainment purposes. This doesn’t mean they entirely lose out on the benefits of music, as a study by the DSJ suggests that music improves productivity. If your music improves the performance of your staff, that in turn makes consumers more likely to spend their money. Energetic, friendly, or alert employees give better customer service while improving the all-around consumer experience. An efficient workforce drives sales up exponentially while also improving your brand image. Even if your playlist isn’t particularly good or appropriate, it’s better than no music at all, as that will make your store uncomfortable for most customers.
Selling retail clothing requires a business model reliant on consumerism and fast fashion. Trends change seasonally, so people have to buy new clothing constantly. Keeping up with fast fashion trends is imperative as this gives clothing stores an idea of what their clients want to see on the shelf. Any store selling trendy clothing will want to encourage their clients to choose them over competitors as prices aren’t often very different. A good way to build a relationship with customers is the play the music they are familiar with. A playlist you can relate to will add memories to your shopping cart and a feel-good factor that will make you want to visit the store more often.
The hills are alive with the sounds of music, while retailers use the same sounds to get you to spend more. The sound of cash or your credit card swiping matches the beat of the song in the background. If you’re looking to turn your online store into a walk-in store, then curating a good playlist and hiring a DJ would be a good investment.