The psychology behind in store music and shopping behaviour

Music can have a large influence on consumer behaviour, so having the right music playing in your shop is vital. To make the most of the music you are playing you need to think about the mood or feeling you want to create.

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Upbeat or slow? Classical or modern?

Research shows that the flow of customers through your shop can be heavily impacted by the volume and also the tempo of the in store music.

Louder music, or music with a faster tempo can result in your customers moving a bit faster around the shop without reducing sales but be careful, as loud music that your customers don’t like could cause them to become mildly frustrated which could then be interpreted as a negative experience. These are subconscious actions that they might not even be aware of.

Playing slower music will result in your customers moving more slowly so they may spend more time in your shop and spend more money. When might you want this? Probably during quieter times. If people are listening to music that they like it can make the time pass faster, so if you have periods when you are expecting longer queues then this could help keep your customers relaxed and happy whilst queuing.

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What is right for your shop?

What kind of feel do you want your customers to have? Are you high end or more of a budget shop? According to research by APS if you are selling expensive products then playing classical music could encourage your customers to spend that little bit more. But if you are selling lower ticket items classical music would not be right, it could give the wrong impression and make customers feel a bit wary of the prices. You could consider having a bespoke music package created by a media company such as

So there is a lot to consider when choosing your background music. Where your business fits in the market and the demographics of your customers will be important, plus the music needs to fit with your brand and your range of products. Do you want your customers spending more time in store, or is an increase in your sales the main focus? Even slight changes in your shop can make a huge difference to the customer experience and behaviour.