The iPhone and other popular smartphone brands have become central to our lives. Nine cellphone owners in 10say they carry their phone with them “frequently.” And when a new model comes out, we rush to retail stores to try (and maybe buy) it.
As a result, local wireless retailers are now among the most important destinations in any city, township, or neighborhood. But with competition fierce among wireless retailers, business owners are looking for any advantage they can get over the competition.
The use of in-store music to create a better customer experience (which in turn leads to more sales) has made music for business one of the most vital elements for wireless retailers.
Why Should I Play Music in My Business?
Running a retail shop isn't easy, and business owners have dozens of daily decisions to make. Arguably, the decision to play music is an easy one. Doing so comes with plenty of benefits.
These are a few great reasons to play music in your wireless shop:
- Academic studies have confirmed the connection between music and shopping behavior. Researchers have studied music and retail environments for decades. Experts agree that using pleasant music in the background can help people feel more comfortable and engaged. They tend to spend more in an environment like this.
- Retail music connects the customer with one of their phone’s best features. You can do so many amazing things with your smartphone, yet the best app may still be the ability to store and playback thousands of songs at the push of a touch screen. Music and wireless phones are deeply intertwined, which makes in-store music a prominent part of the wireless shopping experience.
- As wireless phones get cooler and cooler, they become more and more of a lifestyle purchase. Ever seen the lines outside an Apple store on the launch day of a slick new phone? Rest assured that those folks didn’t camp out overnight because of the 12 percent increase in megapixels for the phone’s camera. They want that phone because it has a cachet.
And if you ask anyone in the retail fashion industry, when people shop for things with style, a high-energy music mix playing in the store is one of the most reliable ways to boost sales.
- Music influences mood, and mood influences shopping behavior. The retail background music we hear has a significant role in our perspective. Upbeat music makes us happy, while sad tunes can do the opposite.
Mood also influences how likely a person is to make a purchase and how much they buy when visiting a store. If wireless retailers play in-store music that boosts an individual’s mood, it’s safe to say they are increasing sales simultaneously.
- Music helps keep private conversations private. Many people are asked to share highly confidential personal information when purchasing a new wireless phone. Fast-paced dance tunes in the background may be ideal for those who worry about their social security number, address, or mother’s maiden name being spoken aloud for all to hear.
- With little to differentiate one wireless retailer from another, the in-store experience becomes much more important. Wireless retailers may beg to differ, but to consumers, if you’ve been in one smartphone retail store, you’ve been in them all. But those business owners who partner with a business in-store music provider are in a good position to use music to make their retail space stand out.
- You have more control over your in-store music, even when you can’t be there. As the busy owner of a thriving wireless store, you can’t be everywhere all the time. As much as you love your hard-working employees, their musical tastes may not be appropriate for the store.
With an in-store music program, you control the playlists and genres of music your customers hear. Control the service from your laptop, tablet, or smartphone, whether in the store or thousands of miles away.
How to Choose Music for My Wireless Business
Finding the right playlist can seem daunting. The music you love may not resonate with your customers or employees. Rather than building a list from music you know, dig deeper into your market.
Consider the following questions about your clientele:
- Are your customers on the younger side? Let consumers guide your choices. Pandora's Today's Hip Hop and Pop Hits contains the most listened to tunes of today. You know consumers already download and love these songs, so they might be just right for your store.
- Do you have older clientele? A playlist made up of 60s, 70s, and 80s hits could be just right for an older customer set. The tunes you play could help them feel like they're right at home as they shop.
- Do your customers tend to be savvy and hip? Some consumers crave new music they've never heard anywhere else. A unique playlist, such as Lo-Fi Chill, could signal that you're modern and savvy. But the music might not be immediately recognizable to your customers.
To legally play a Pandora list (or any other curated set of tunes), you'll need to work with a trusted partner. Playing music without respecting the artist's copyright could cost you thousands in fines. Companies like Cloud Cover Media take care of the legal issues so you can play the music you want.
With your playlists set, pay attention to your shop. Do your customers seem happy and willing to linger? Is your staff content with the choices?
Don't be afraid to mix things up if your first choice wasn't quite right. With a little experimentation, you'll settle on the right sounds for your shop.
Chapter 1: Always On Connectivity. (August 2015). Pew Research Center.
The Effects of Music in a Retail Setting on Real and Perceived Shopping Times. (2000). Journal of Business Research.