We have probably all had the experience of shopping somewhere with badly chosen background music. There is nothing like a loud and obnoxious track to immediately put you off your browsing. Retailers face a difficult decision when deciding how to make background music effective.

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Some shops might give up on playing music all together, but that can create an awkward silence. Scientific research has been done on how influential background music can be when it is well chosen. The best background music is the kind that you might not notice but that enhances your shopping experience. This in turn can lead to customers buying more products. There are a few factors to consider when picking this kind of music.

1. Legality

It may seem obvious, but it is easy to forget that the first consideration when choosing music to play in a public place is if you have the right to do so. Check and double-check the licensing requirements before you do anything.

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2. Brand

Your business must have its own brand. This is your style, the thing that makes you distinctive as a company. You want your music to match that. For instance, if you sell elegant jewellery, you will want elegant music. All in store media contributes to the overall impression created by your shop. This includes any digital screens such as those available with in store media, and it includes your musical choices.

3. Target Audience

Closely related to this, you will want to think about your target audience. Who is most likely to buy your products, and what are likely to be their musical preferences? For instance, if you sell goods for children, you want music that children will enjoy but that will not make their parents scream. Classical music or punk rock may both be effective as background music, but only if the right audience is listening.

4. Not Too Personal

You cannot base your business decisions solely on the music you like. Yes, it is nice if the music is something you enjoy, but it is the customers, not you, who have to be the priority. If the music that has the most positive impact on them is something you would not choose for yourself, you may just have to tolerate it.

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