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5 Reasons to Control The Overhead Music In your Store

5 reasons to control overhead musicMany background music solutions for stores are playlist-focused. These same business music services lock you into pre-built playlists (not to mention long-term contracts) that you can’t review or edit before playing in your store. While this “plug and play” method may make the systems easy to use, it also presents many potential issues for businesses using the programming. Instead of playing overhead music that helps boost sales, you end up playing the wrong track at the wrong time and shoppers end up leaving your store before making a purchase.

Can you say “Major Bummer”?

The key here is control. If you aren’t in control of the music playing in your store, there’s a good chance it’s not quite right. Here are our top 5 reasons to control the music in your store:

1. Music affects the way people shop.

 Numerous studie s have concluded that the music played in a store affects the way shoppers act. Faster music makes them shop faster, but makes time spent waiting on line seem longer. Loud music has a similar impact. Slower music is more tolerable for long periods of time. So depending on what you sell, a different music tempo might be necessary. For example, a convenience store looking for impulse buys might want to play fast music, while a furniture store will want something a little more relaxed.

Controlling the music that plays in your store gives you the opportunity to tweak what’s playing based on your merchandise, sales cycle, or even time of day.

2. Music attracts or repels certain audiences

Different age groups and buyer personas are attracted to different types of music. If you want to attract tweens and teens, you’re certainly going to play different music than a store that sells high-end jewelery…even if it’s not the music that you prefer. 

If you cant control the music in your store, there’s always a chance you’re going to get stuck playing a track or playlists that just doesn’t appeal to your target audience. 

3. Your staff might hate you.

When selecting music, your staff might be just as important as your customers. Some solutions limit the number of songs you can play at a time, I remember working for a smoothie store that limited the music selections to 1 CD a month. I can’t tell you how many times I heard the same song over an 8 hour shift… but I can tell you it was too many. My colleagues and I were ready to revolt – it felt like no one cared what we were enduring while we were trying to work! 

With a few more options and variation, it would have been much more enjoyable. A girl from New Jersey can only hear a bad cover of Born To Run so many times before she threatens to snap the CD in half!  

4. Music sets the mood

You stop at a coffee shop on your way to work. You haven’t had your first cup yet, and are feeling a bit groggy. You open the door, and it sounds like a club.


Music is a mood-setter. Morning coffee drinkers are more likely to be recovering from a night of clubbing than interesting in going to the club. That style of music sets an inappropriate mood, and is likely to drive them away. But these club-style songs are frequently Top 40 hits, so if you’re using a music solution you can’t control, and are playing a Top 40 or Today’s Hits type of station, you might end up, well, clubbing at 7AM, with no real way to change it. Oops!  

5. Control gives you specific options

Time of day, sales volume, and target customers all work hand-in-hand when selecting the right kind of music. A deli might cater to professionals in the morning, moms at lunch, and teens in the late afternoon. And at each time of day, a different kind of music is the right choice.

When your music solution gives you the opportunity to control what’s playing at what time of day, you can effectively appeal to all of these groups individually, instead of trying to be everything to every one. 


How would you rate your music? Would you change it if you could?


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