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Still Blasting Customers Out of It

Customer Music

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Customer Perceptions Ltd. have recently updated a survey they first conducted in 2008 and it suggests that over 70% of Piped, Background and Store Music serves to satisfy the taste of staff but is often disliked by customers.

Over 400 Customers and 200 Staff were surveyed in 70 outlets across the Island of Ireland in June. The outlets ranged from fast food outlets to middle class restaurants and top hotels, from fashion boutiques to department stores, auto accessories shops, mobile phone retailers, small and larger supermarkets and stationers & newsagents.

Customer Perceptions has experience of compiling some 340,000 “Mystery Shopping” reports for its clients over nearly 20 years but as Company Director, Emma Harte, explains; “We looked at this subject of in-store music about 8 years ago and we think it interesting that the findings have changed very little. The original idea of the survey started in our own canteen, most of our team agreeing that music in stores was often too loud or inappropriate for the target customer of the store in question”.

This year’s survey shows:

  • 86% of outlets staff selected the in-store music and its volume
  • 63% of cases, no formal policy exist regarding the background music selection
  • 88% of staff “liked the music played in their place of employment” (other than at Christmas time)


  • 58% of the customers surveyed said that they often find music levels much too loud
  • In-store music choices were disliked by 76% of the 45+ age group and 31% of the younger group
  • 59% of customers thought the music was “inappropriate for that specific store”
  • 28% of customers said that the piped music or radio was occasionally the cause of them leaving a store before they would otherwise do so or avoiding it altogether
  • 32% thought the music / radio in the background played “a significant role in the atmosphere and image created by the outlet”
  • 22% of customers said they never notice the music / radio one way or the other

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Still Blasting Customers Out of It