In a retail environment, the customer experience is everything. As a result, business owners should always be on the lookout for ways to elevate or enhance the customer experience. This can encourage repeat custom, boost your sales, or even improve your brand's overall reputation.
One way in which you can achieve this goal is through music curation.
What is music curation?
Music curation is an element of experience design that is based on the music you play in your store and the impact this can have on your customers. It is a process where music is carefully selected with the intention of positively influencing listener behaviours. This often works better than choosing any old playlist, as the music is specifically selected for your store and clients.
Why does music improve the customer experience?
Music influences in ways we may not even realise - which means when used correctly, it can be a useful tool when it comes to drawing in customers and ensuring they spend time browsing your store. This is because music:
- Creates a specific atmosphere.
- Alters our mood.
- Influences our behaviour.
Creates a Specific Atmosphere.
The music you play throughout the store can be used to change the way the space feels. For example, gentle ambient music is a pleasant background to any shopping experience.
However, it is important that you choose the right music, a decision which is primarily based on your customers themselves. For example, one study found that older adults prefer instrumental background music, while the younger generations might prefer to hear more currently trending/popular songs when asked about retail music.
Changes our mood.
Listening to music can drastically alter our mood. This is because “music is processed directly by the amygdala, which is the part of the brain involved in mood and emotions.” As such, you can use this to wield further influence over your customers, by helping lift their spirits. For example, happy, upbeat music is likely to bring a smile to your customer's face.
Influences our behaviour.
As music has an influence on our mood, it can also change our behaviour. For example, one study found that playing slow-paced music in retail environments “slowed customers down as they shopped, and people purchased more during their visit.”
Furthermore, people are more likely to enter a store where music is playing as they subconsciously perceive the space to be more welcoming. When customers feel comfortable in your shop, they are more likely to buy something as it helps strengthen the relationship you share and create a sense of trust. Simply put, “comfortable customers buy, buy more, buy faster, and buy longer than uncomfortable customers.”
Can the wrong music harm the customer experience?
As discussed above, it's important that you choose the right music for your store.
In fact, a study from Research Square found that “music that does not match the store can make customers feel uncomfortable, leave or not enter the store.”
The volume of music can also impact the customer experience, as people are often quick to leave overly noisy environments. Not only could this mean they think less favourably of your brand, but they’ll also spend less time browsing, which means you can expect fewer sales.
Music in Shopping Centres.
Music played throughout communal areas in shopping centres must also be carefully selected. This process is slightly more complex, as it is not as simple as choosing music that matches the ‘vibe’ of an individual store, but rather the shopping centre as a whole.
Slow, relaxing music can be used to encourage customers to take their time when looking through each shop and the space as a whole. This can also create a more calming atmosphere throughout the centre, which could increase sales as “consumers are willing to pay 10% more for something when they are in a relaxed state of mind.”
However, shopping centres looking to avoid overcrowding could play faster music, as this encourages shoppers to move through the space at a much quicker rate.
Get in touch to find out more.
If you’d like to learn more about music for business or retail stores, please do not hesitate to get in touch today. We’d be happy to discuss how our music curation and music strategy services can be used to enhance the customer experience and, by extension, the success of your store.
We look forward to hearing from you.