Christmas music in stores: Lifting spirits or boosting sales?
Published Saturday, December 13, 2014 10:04PM EST
Last Updated Sunday, December 14, 2014 7:01AM EST
Christmas music seems to be having the desired effect in Canadian stores, according to a new report.
Whether you love them or not, Christmas tunes put shoppers in a buying mood, according to the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN).
In a poll conducted by SOCAN, 82 per cent of people surveyed said they enjoyed listening to Christmas music while they shop, and one in three said the music reminded them to buy presents.
But that affinity for Deck the Halls in the shopping malls varies amongst age groups and the sexes. While older shoppers said they enjoyed Christmas music at the mall, younger people said they preferred more variety to their holiday tunes. And men, more than women, would pass on the Christmas melodies as they wander the malls, said the report.
Some shoppers --29 per cent --said they stayed in a store longer because they enjoyed the Christmas music, while 36 per cent left because of it.
The new poll may be interesting for stores that choose to skip Christmas music altogether.
Toad Hall Toys, an independent Winnipeg store, does not play Christmas music because the licensing fees are too expensive. Manager Kari England says it would cost hundreds of dollars a year to play music in the store.
"The sounds that we like hearing are the creaky floors,” England says. “That is part of the charm of the old building."
“And I think that's enough. Let people have their own head space and think, instead of adding another layer on top."
And some major stores, like Target, don't play music at all in an effort to give shoppers a "distraction-free" shopping experience.
The report also asked respondents about the use of Christmas music outside the malls.
Of the 1,543 Canadian respondents surveyed, 43 per cent said they would like to hear Christmas music in their workplace. And what about those long holiday lines? Nearly 65 per cent of Canadians would welcome Christmas music in places where they have to wait, such as the doctor’s or post office.
And November tunes are too early -- 58 per cent say “Play it only in December.”
With a report by Jill Macyson