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The impact of background music on the duration of consumer stay at stores: An empirical study in malaysia



Consumers spend more time shopping and expect value-added options like background melodious songs, ample car parking, good ambience, prayer halls and rest rooms. The main concern is whether these facilities prolong consumers stay in the store and increase business sales. This research article is about the relationship between the background music tempo and the duration of consumers’ stay in the stores. Data from 177 respondents were received and analyzed. The results show that the tempo of music is significantly affecting the emotional state of the consumers; fast tempo music increasing the pleasure and arousal levels. Slow tempo music has consumers stay longer in restaurants and supermarkets. However, the tempo of music does not play a significant role in manipulating the duration consumers spend in a book store and apparel shop. 2015
Keng-Lin Soh
Universiti Sains Malaysia
K. Jayaraman
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Li-Peng Choo
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Shayan Kiumarsi
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Consumers spend more time shopping and expect value-added options like background
melodious songs, ample car parking, good ambience, prayer halls and rest rooms. The main
concern is whether these facilities prolong consumers stay in the store and increase business
sales. This research article is about the relationship between the background music tempo and
the duration of consumers’ stay in the stores. Data from 177 respondents were received and
analyzed. The results show that the tempo of music is signicantly affecting the emotional
state of the consumers; fast tempo music increasing the pleasure and arousal levels. Slow
tempo music has consumers stay longer in restaurants and supermarkets. However, the tempo
of music does not play a signicant role in manipulating the duration consumers spend in a
book store and apparel shop.
Keywords: Background Music; Arousal; Consumer Behavior; Shopping Experience; Stimulus-
Organism-Response (S-O-R) Model.
In the last twenty years, studies concerning the effects of music genre, tempo and rhythm on
consumer behavior have increased. Researchers have used different music genres, tempos and
rhythms as background music to study consumer behavior. These studies show consumers
associate types of music with certain products and making choice of a product over another, or
with particular spending patterns and determining the spending on the same type of product.
Milliman (1986) found fast tempo background music signicantly inuence consumer
behavior in restaurants. North & Hargreaves (2008) found music and song lyrics could affect
♣ Corresponding author: Assoc. Prof. Dr. K. Jayaraman, Graduate School of Business (GSB), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM),
Penang, Phone: +6010-375 0868, Fax: +604-653 5867 / 2792, E-mail:
International Journal of Business and Society, Vol. 16 No. 2, 2015, 247 - 260
... The impact of music on consumer behaviour in retail establishments has been the subject of research by several researchers (Milliman, 1982;Areni and Kim, 1993;Yalch and Spangenberg, 1993;Caldwell and Hibbert, 1999;Husain et al., 2002;Guéguen et al., 2007;Yeoh, 2010). Some studies concerned the impact of music on the actual time spent shopping (Milliam 1982;Kellaris and Kent, 1992;Yalch and Spangenberg, 2000;Soh et al., 2015). According to Milliman (1982) when slow tempo background music is played consumers shop longer and • • • CHAPTER 15 spend more time in supermarket. ...
... According to Milliman (1982) when slow tempo background music is played consumers shop longer and • • • CHAPTER 15 spend more time in supermarket. Music not only influences also affects the duration of consumers' stay in supermarkets but also the listeners' emotions (Husain, 2002;Soh et al. 2015). The tempo of the played songs significantly affects the mood of customers (Sherman, 1991;Kellaris and Kent, 1992;Morris and Boone, 1998;Husain et al., 2002). ...
... In turn, the volume of music affects the speed at which customers pass through the store. However according to the research results of Soh et al. (2015) fast tempo music gives the consumers more pleasure and arousal than slow tempo music. Moreover, it has been found that loud music encourages customers to move around the supermarket at a higher speed, but this does not reduce sales. ...
The aim of this study was to define the main mistakes made during the implementation of CRM/ERP systems in SMEs in Poland and suggest some solutions.
... The central assumption of this stream of research is that a stimulus in the retail environment (S) influences customers' organismic emotional state (O), which, in turn, lead to certain behavioural responses (R). The body of literature on environmental cues in traditional retail settings demonstrated that hedonic value induced by ambient factors (Andersson et al., 2012;Leenders et al., 2016;Michon et al., 2005;Parsons, 2009;Soh et al., 2015;Sullivan, 2002) and design cues (Lanjewar, 2014;Reydet and Carsana, 2017) influence shoppers' emotional state and subsequent approach behaviour. Some scholars joined the conversation about the digitalization of retailing and extending the S-O-R paradigm to the influence of online environmental stimuli (e.g. ...
... Dominance determines whether a consumer feels in control or not in the environment in which they are currently (Mehrabian and Russell, 1974). However, dominance factor has proved to be the weakest part of the model in empirical research (Soh et al., 2015;Vieira, 2013). In this study, the underlying mechanisms of behaviours were measured via experience emotions as well as perceptions of the mall environment. ...
... The response (R) is the ultimate outcome of the internal processes of the organism, formulated as approach or avoidance responses in an environment (Fiore and Kim, 2007). Approach behaviours in the mall environment are positive in nature such as unplanned spending, increased spending and frequency or length of visits (Soh et al., 2015), while avoidance behaviours are negative such as not spending money, or not revisiting a mall (Kawaf and Tagg, 2012). ...
Purpose There is ample evidence supporting the generalizability of the stimuli-organism-response framework in the retail field, with limited extensions to digital signage inside malls. This article postulates that favourable perceptions of the mall environment result in stronger approach behaviours than positive experienced emotions. This varying indirect effect is predicated to be moderated by shoppers' enjoyment of hedonic digital signage content. Design/methodology/approach This study was conducted at two upmarket super-regional malls in South Africa with a wide variety of contemporary digital signage displaying hedonic content. Purposive quota sampling was used to intercept and survey 400 regular shoppers viewing dynamic hedonic digital signage content. Data was collected via an interviewer-administered structured questionnaire. Hayes macro conditional process analysis was used to determine the moderating role of hedonic content enjoyment and to estimate regression coefficients of the proposed model. Findings It was found that favourable perceptions of the mall environment is strongly associated with approach behaviours relative to the indirect effect of positive experienced emotions. When shoppers' enjoyment of hedonic content is factored in the model, low enjoyment of hedonic content shows an insignificant effect of digital signage on approach behaviours. However, for high enjoyment of hedonic content, this relationship is positive and significant. Research limitations/implications Digital signage was only studied as a design cue and the promising role as social cue or ambient factor were thus not take into account. It also applied a cross-sectional survey rather than an experiment and has modelled the effects of digital signage as a part of retail atmospherics rather than its presence or absence in malls. The results were generated based on a survey with shoppers from two upmarket super-regional malls in South Africa while viewing digital signage displaying hedonic content. Findings might differ for utilitarian content and other settings. Practical implications Practical recommendations on how shopping mall management could utilise digital signage to possibly increase approach behaviours are provided. Originality/value There is very limited research on the effects of digital signage on shoppers in the mall environment. This study is one of the first to consider enjoyment of digital signage content inside malls as moderating variable. Additionally, this study contributed to this growing field of shopper-oriented technologies in methodological and pragmatic manners.
... Heung and Gu [16] pointed out that the atmospheric design of restaurants directly influences consumer satisfaction and behavior. Most relevant studies have also indicated that since background music impacts consumer responses, restaurant operators should include background music in the overall restaurant design [10,[17][18][19][20] and should strive to create an appropriate environment for providing consumers with a comfortable dining experience and to improve the overall dining experience, thereby enhancing consumers' positive emotions. ...
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The music environment of a restaurant is an important factor that affects consumer behaviors during the dining experience, especially silent dining behaviors among people who are not encouraged to talk in the context of COVID-19. This study empirically analyzed the influence of consumers’ background music preferences on their emotions and behavioral responses during their dining experience at a high-end Chinese restaurant. A total of 393 valid samples were obtained through purposive sampling and snowball sampling. The research tools used in this study included a personal background information questionnaire, four Oriental and Western music conditions, a background music preference scale, a scale for evaluating emotions during the dining experience, and a behavioral response scale. The results showed that the subjects preferred the Chinese classical music—the Butterfly Lovers Concerto. Background music affected the participants’ emotions during their dining experience, and different background music conditions resulted in significant differences in emotions and behaviors. The consumers’ emotions, during their dining experience significantly predicted their behaviors under all four music conditions. The greatest contribution and value of this study stem from the finding that the background music at a restaurant can arouse specific positive emotions in consumers during their dining experience and thus affect their eating behavior.
... Slow music has made guests stay longer in hotels and superstores since music lyrics could affect human behaviour. However, its rhythm did not have a vital role in influencing the duration clients spend in bookstores (Soh et al., 2015). ...
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... Students seem to increase the consumption of drinks with fast tempo. [16,[47][48][49] Mode Music in a major mode positively influences mood, which in turn was correlated with greater sales than music in a minor mode. Combination of slow music in minor mode led to higher purchases. ...
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Psychological research has long demonstrated that preferences can be influenced by stimuli coming from the environment. Music, as an external stimulus influencing people behaviours, purchasing processes and spending, has been widely analysed in consumer behaviour and marketing literature. Here, we focus on the effect of music genres on preferences and willingness to pay for selected ecosystem services of a Nature Park when they are elicited with a Discrete Choice Experiment. This aspect is important in non-market valuation because music can represent an element of context-dependence for the assessment of individual choices, so that the assumption of preference stability does not hold, and welfare estimates may be biased. The results of a generalized mixed logit model evidenced a significant effect of music on preferences. If elicited preferences depend on the context on which the survey is implemented, wrong information to decision makers is provided when the choice context is altered by an uncontrolled external stimulus. This result is particularly important for applied researchers and policy makers. First, the use of protocols and guidelines that instruct respondents about the ambient background when answering a questionnaire is highly recommended, particularly for online surveys. Second, specific genres of music should be used in educational and ecosystem services conservation campaigns and also piped in visitor centres and virtual tours to encourage nature conservation and improve visitors’ sensitiveness for the environment.
... This is in line with the opinion of Yalch and Spangenberg (1993) which states that the role of mood as a mediator between the physical environment of stores and consumer behavior is inconsistent. Another explanation, not everything can be influenced by mood (Soh et al., 2015). Kim (2006) also states that the intention to buy is not influenced by mood. ...
The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of in-store music on impulsive buying among college students (as a millennial generation) in Bandung State Polytechnic, employed customer mood as mediator. Data from 200 respondents were received and analyzed using a regression for testing the hypotheses developed. The results show that the music is significantly affecting the customer's mood and impulsive buying. However, the customer mood does not play significantly affecting impulsive buying. Future research and managerial implications are addressed. Keywords: in-store music, mood, impulsive buying
... A slow tempo reflects a calm music, while a fast tempo leads to an upbeat type of music. The music in a store environment increases purchases (Milliman, 1982(Milliman, , 1986Knöferle et al., 2012), affects arousal (Andersson et al., 2012;Soh et al., 2015;Egermann et al., 2015;Husain, Thompson, & Schellenberg 2002;Kellaris & Kent, 1993), and triggers neurological responses (Doelling & Poeppel, 2015). ...
Despite the technological advances, empirical studies to understand how VR influences consumer behavior have been limited to date. This study aims (i) to extend the S(Stimuli)-O (Organism)-R (Response) framework by considering escapism as stimuli and incorporating vividness and telepresence as an organism and (ii) examine the role of calm versus upbeat music tempo in the background. Based on an experimental study of between-groups factorial design with two hundred participants, the results offer support to our conceptual framework. Escapism, which functions as experience, stimulates the consumers’ cognitive and affective state that increase pleasure. Subsequently, the consumers’ sense of pleasure heightens the vividness and presence of the virtual reality store, which positively affects their intentions. The link between presence and behavioral intention is stronger with calm music in the background. On the contrary, the link between arousal and pleasure is stronger when consumers listen to upbeat music in the virtual store.
... Additionally, music manipulation, such as differing volumes, tempos, styles and genres, can affect the overall restaurant dining experience [90,92]; customers' behavior, satisfaction and perception towards acoustic comfort in a restaurant; atmospheric characteristics [22,30,35,[93][94][95][96][97]; and food perception and acceptance [98]. Moreover, music affects customers' willingness to spend more money and time in restaurants [93,97,[99][100][101][102]. Another portion of the study shows that customers' perceptions and consumption of food and drinks are also affected by music and background noise; loud music can harm the taste and consumption of food and drinks [9,78,[103][104][105][106][107][108][109][110]. ...
In the context of eatery places, it is important that people concentrate and focus on the smells and tastes of their food and drinks to ensure that they are satisfied with their meals, as this influences the positive behavior of the intent to return and can prompt them to recommend an eatery place to others later. A higher level of noise may distract people from having a fine dining experience and could interfere with their sense of smell and taste. Ultimately, long-term exposure to noise will affect not only a person’s health and well-being but also his or her social interactions, communication and preferences for acoustic comfort during the dining experience. This paper will discuss the critical literature reviews of the determining factors of this phenomenon in order to develop a conceptual framework by which to classify eatery place typologies and diners’ perceived acoustic comfort. The main goal of this paper is to clearly elucidate the different categorizations of eatery places and the determining factors that might have significant effects on human acoustic comfort. Therefore, the paper aims to develop a framework based on the determining factors of acoustic comfort classification in eatery places. This framework can be used by diners as a reference for selecting suitable eatery places based on their preferences.
This study aimed to examine the influence of music styles on customers patronage (background music in advert). The study used survey research design, which copies of questionnaire were distributed to 400 individuals residing in Enugu metropolis. The data collected in the course of the field work was presented in a tabular form and bar chart. The data was analysed based on simple percentages, round up to 2 decimal places. However, for the purpose of testing the hypotheses, the Liner Regression was used. The result of the findings shows that music in advert has significant effect on consumer attitude and music style has significant effect on consumers identification with a product. This result is in consistent with the finding of Luca, Jean-Charles and Ada (2014) that showed that famous music reduces shoppers' cognitive activity. It distracts attention from store cues such as promotion messages. On the other hand, famous music enhances positive feelings that, in turn, enhance shoppers' patronage. The study concludes that music styles have significant influence on customers' patronage. The study recommends that advertisers and marketers should be aware of musical congruity with other elements of the advertisement. This is essential, since attention, memory and attitude will be enhanced when there is high musical congruity.
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Nowadays, grooming is considered an essential part of life to maintaining and up keeping a healthy and hygienic outlook which plays a key role in social bonding. As it turns out, the desire to looking good has spawned a wide range of beauty products causing the beauty industry to thrive and grow at a rapid rate. In other words the Malaysian Beauty Salon Markets have become big business today, driven by a rising population, disposable incomes, urbanisation and increasing influence of western culture to look good and to feel good. The beauty market is valued at USD 119.24 million and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.23% in the next five years, to USD 153.86 million in 2015. As a result of a highly fragmented in this market, the need for differentiation from other salons is impendency for this industry. This research aims to study the different attributes of customer's concerns and reveals the final factors that generate customer intention to visit facial spa treatment centres in Malaysia. The effort is devoted to identifying those dimensions of services provided in facial spa treatment centres for instance, atmospheric, service quality, price, brand image and location which aid to build up a greater relationship with their patrons. Data is collected via questionnaires distribution from the target population of the female with the age range from 16-63 years old. A sample size of 308 was studied and data analysis involving Structural Equation Modeling SmartPLS version 3.0 software were used. Service quality reached the conclusion as the strongest predictor in influencing customer intention to visit facial spa treatment centres, followed by the factors of price and brand image. Further to that, an Importance-Performance matrix analysis was conducted in order to identify factors that need to be given priority for spa owners in Malaysia. These findings made contributions beyond the high context services for instance beauty salons, massage salons, hair salons, nail salons, financial consulting and medical care with the matching services characteristics.
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This study investigated the impact of musical fit on consumers' purchase intentions regarding utilitarian products. Participants were shown pictures of products and asked to state the maximum they would be willing to pay for each item. Following that, participants were also shown pictures of two competing utilitarian products, one being a more 'upmarket' (e.g. Duracell batteries) version than the other (e.g. Eveready batteries), and they were asked to choose one of the two while being exposed to either Malay music, pop music, classical music or no music condition. Participants were not influenced to pay more for utilitarian products when being exposed to the different musical styles (and no music) condition. Participants also did not necessarily choose the more 'upmarket' product when exposed to different musical styles (and no music) condition. This suggests that musical fit may not influence purchase intentions for utilitarian products.
Numerous studies, led in natural setting, have shown that background music affected consumer's behavior but the effect of background music played outside had never been tested. Then, an experiment was carried out in a open-air market with a stall of toys and knick-knack. Results show that, when a popular music was played, clients stayed longer at the stall. A near-significant effect on sales was also observed. The hypothesis of a positive affect activated by background music is discussed to explain these results.
Examines the situational dimensions affecting purchasing behavior of Hispanic customers in a mall at some distance from their neighborhoods. The Hispanic shopper (which would also include a large segment of immigrants) makes the (shopping) trip worthwhile by travelling with companions, consummating a purchase while at the mall, and buying food or beverage during the visit. The Hispanic shopper also spends more time at the mall and visits more stores while there. This is an example of how marketers have become increasingly interested in the extent to which situational factors influence immigrants' purchase behavior.
Music is universal. As a successor to the book The Social Psychology of Music, this book aims to provide social psychological answers to the numerous questions concerning music. Given the prominence music plays in our lives, it is still however imperilled by modern culture. Forewarning an imminent danger to music, it was warned in the previous book that the digital revolution would pave the way for legal and illegal online music stores and computer applications that would completely change the way people accessed music. With its ubiquity, music has been downgraded as insignificant or 'cheap'. This book deems that the best way to safeguard music is to comprehend the rightful place it occupies in our everyday modern life, and those more complex factors that rationalize our most profound experiences of music. The chapters in this book argue that the social and applied psychology approach to music can tackle issues such as: why some pieces elicit strong emotional reactions; what makes a good musician, or why some composers are forgotten easily; whether music can boost retailers' profits; whether there is a link between musical subculture and suicide; and whether music can be used to help sick patients. Using social and applied psychology to understand some questions about music helps to safeguard it by allowing people to make effective arguments concerning 'music as a manifestation of the human spirit'; against modern-day pressures such as neo-conservative protesters, accountants, and the digital revolution by demonstrating its social and financial value.
Extending research by North and Hargreaves (1998), this study investigated the effect of music on perceived atmosphere and purchase intentions in a restaurant. Four musical styles (jazz, popular, easy listening and classical) and no music were played in a restaurant over two consecutive weeks. Results indicated that different types of music had different effects on perceived atmosphere and the amount patrons were prepared to spend. Classical, jazz and popular music were associated with patrons being prepared to spend the most on their main meal. This value was found to be significantly lower in the absence of music and when easy listening was played. There was some evidence that the type of music also had an effect on the amount of money patrons actually spent in the restaurant. Overall, the study contributes to the development of a model that seeks to account for the relationship between music and consumer behaviour. Copyright
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