8 Amazing Effects That Background Music Has On Sales


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Is there any point to the background music you hear at the supermarket?While some stores play or don’t play music without a second thought, the significant effects of music have been identified in dozens of academic studies.

We’ll break out the coolest findings as summarized in a paper by Nicolas Guéguen, Céline Jacob, Marcel Lourel and Hélène Le Guellec.

Loud music causes customers to move through a supermarket more quickly, without reducing sales volume

Cain-Smith & Curnow (1966)

Full vitiation here.

Low-tempo music causes shoppers to move slowly, but they also buy more. Similarly at restaurants, slow music causes people to take their time but buy more.

Milliman (1982 & 1986); Caldwell & Hibbert (1999)

Full vitiation here.

Classical music versus Top 40 music at a wine store increases sales and leads customers to buy more expensive merchandise.

Areni & Kim (1993)

Full vitiation here.

Classical music at a restaurant makes people buy more than does pop music or no music

Shilcock & Hargreaves (2003)

Full vitiation here.

However, classical music makes people think of a store as expensive, and this isn't right in all contexts

Yalch & Spangenberg (1993)

Full citation here.

French music at a wine store makes people buy French wines. German music makes them buy German wines

North, Hargreaves & McKendrick (1999)

Full vitiation here.

Playing music when callers are on hold makes them stay on the line longer before hanging up

North, Hargreaves & McKendrick (1999)

Full vitiation here.

People perceive a shorter wait time when they hear music that they like

Stratton (1992)

Full citation here.

Music isn't the only factor you need to understand

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